Barbados Prime Minister Thompson’s Weasel Words On Integrity Legislation – No Guts. No Leadership. No Personal Transparency From Our Jet-Setter PM

NOTE: Due to reader demand, we will leave this article at the top of the page for a few more days. Scroll down for new articles.

Our first thoughts on Prime Minister Thompson’s CBC Interview… on the web. http://www.cbc.bb (Radio 2 – 900am – 94.7fm)

Prime Minister Thompson Fails On Integrity Issues…

“In relation to issues of integrity legislation in governments and so on, we have already put a draft out there, and established a committee under the Chairmanship of Senator Orlando Marville… that committee has already been meeting. They are going to be holding some public hearings.

One of the things that has arisen… in Trinidad, only to find after he got into office that that particular piece of legislation has had the unintended effect of stopping most people from serving on Boards and so on, because to become a member of a statutory board you have to do a declaration of assets. So they have found it very difficult to get people to serve in public office based on the declaration of assets.

We have to make our legislation workable. Barbados is a small country. We don’t have a massive talent pool to draw from – and therefore while we want to ensure that we have legislation that lends to accountability, transparency and so on, we also have to recognise that that in and of itself can create problems for individuals who may have the talent and ability to serve who are normal private sector citizens going about their business, but who are caught by the provisions of this particular legislation…”

…Barbados Prime Minister David Thompson on CBC Television tonight.

Those BizJet Rides Are Addictive… Why Put Rules In Place Now?

Thompson and his DLP keep acting like they have to invent the wheel when it comes to ITAL – Integrity, Transparency, Accountability Legislation. I guess he only started thinking about integrity in December when his military supporter did a cut and paste from the internet.

Prime Minister Thompson has just informed Barbados that the political and business elites are rebelling in the face of ITAL.

Weasel words galore… “Difficult. Committee. Public hearings.”

Thompson promised to declare his own assets during the election and then reneged.

Thompson promised to immediately adopt a Ministerial Code upon forming a government. He did not.

Thompson uses private jets owned by entities that do business with the Government of Barbados – a situation that is an obvious conflict of interest with the potential for abuse. No transparency. No accountability.

Where is the leadership here? Where is Thompson’s personal commitment to integrity, transparency and accountability?

Where Is The Draft Integrity Legislation That Prime Minister Thompson Said Is “Out There”?

Prime Minister Thompson stated on national television that his DLP Government has draft Integrity Legislation “out there”. Surely he was not talking about the cut and paste job that his senior supporter in the military gathered from the internet at the last moment of the election campaign?

That didn’t include any draft Integrity Legislation. It included the following…

1/ “The Ministerial Code – A Proposal”
2/ “A Model Freedom Of Information Law”
3/ “Principles Underlying The Legal Framework For Integrity In Public Life In Barbados”

Have a look for yourself at our article David Thompson Reveals DLP’s Integrity and Freedom Of Information Plans – Much Cut and Pasted From The Internet Only A Few Days Ago

Could it be that David Thompson is not familiar with what he put “out there”?

Mr. Prime Minister: Where is this Draft Integrity Legislation that you said is “out there”?

Below is our original article posted before the Prime Minister’s television interview…

By the way do not miss CBC TV at 7:30 on 14th April 2008…….Hon. David Thompson will be ” leveling ” with his people.

… DLP insider Jerome Hinds commenting on BFP (link here)

Will “100 Days” Bring Real Action Or “Studies”, “Committees” and “Consultation”?

That’s an interesting choice of words by DLP insider Jerome Hinds as he talks about the Prime Minister’s appearance on CBC TV tonight.

“Leveling” can mean “now telling the truth after having not been truthful”

But whatever Jerome meant, let’s hope that the Prime Minister isn’t going to try and fool the citizens by announcing “talks” or “studies” on the promised ITAL – Integrity, Transparency, Accountability Legislation instead of real action within the promised 100 day period.

So far in the ITAL department, all Thompson and his government have done is failed to adopt a Ministerial Code as promised “immediately” upon taking office.

And then there’s the trouble with the Prime Minister’s personal lack of transparency, accountability – and his unethical behaviour in his accepting the use of a private business jet owned by an entity that does business with the Government of Barbados.

(Sure, David. Your friends just loaned you a multi-million dollar biz jet and crew because they like you – not because they expect to get it back many times over in government contracts that you have the power to issue or influence.)

This bizjet situation unfortunately proves that David Thompson just doesn’t get it. He doesn’t see anything unethical about his behaviour, or any need to publicly justify an action that is against anti-corruption laws in many jurisdictions. He obviously doesn’t get the point that elected and appointed public officials must not only act in a manner that is ethical, but that their actions must also appear to be ethical.

Where is the transparency that David Thompson promised the people of Barbados?

We have said many times that Thompson and the DLP could have and should have adopted a code of ethical behaviour some two years ago. Instead, we received some ITAL promises in the last few weeks of the election that were actually “cut and pasted” from the internet a few days before they were announced. (See BFP’s David Thompson Reveals DLP’s Integrity and Freedom Of Information Plans – Much Cut and Pasted From The Internet Only A Few Days Ago)

We’ll be watching tonight. Let’s see if questions are allowed from the media, and whether any of those lapdog reporters have the guts to ask Thompson the type of questions that the citizens of Barbados deserve to have asked. The type of questions, incidentally, that our “journalists” always feared to ask Owen Arthur when he was sober enough to appear on live TV and radio.

Tonight and tomorrow will reveal as much about the Barbados news media as it will about our current fears that David Thompson is not going to keep his ITAL promises.

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309 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Crime & Law, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption

309 responses to “Barbados Prime Minister Thompson’s Weasel Words On Integrity Legislation – No Guts. No Leadership. No Personal Transparency From Our Jet-Setter PM

  1. Tell me Why

    Where are the representatives from the Nation and The Advocate?
    ……………………………………………………………………..
    I am worried about the selection of journalists for tonight’s Address to the Nation. I see a blatant insult to the two publications, namely the Advocate and the Nation. Am I to believe that these special journalists will be given a script regarding the questions to quiz the Prime Minister?

    Is this the beginning of marginalising the media? Will the Address to the Nation be an extension of the Film Festival? Will we have new political and journalistic actors on our airwaves? Is this what Transparency and Integrity all about?

    Tell me Why the journalists from these two media houses were omitted since it is customary for every media house to have a representative at all Broadcast to the Nation?

    Is Jerome the new Blogging Public Relations Officer for the new administration?

  2. Hants

    Tell me why says “Is this the beginning of marginalising the media?”

    BFP is media too and the can’t be marginalised.

    Besides, The Editor of the Advocate openly visited David Thompson at The PM Office and pledged allegeance to his “new best friends” the DLP Government.

    He marginalised himself and his organisation.

    The Nation is “borderline”.

    Mainstream Media in Barbados is good at reporting sports,jokes and gossip.

  3. Donald Duck, Esq

    Reminder for persons who want to check which one of the promises made by the dlp for immediate action and for implementation in 100 days wii be dropped in Thompson’s speech this evening.

    IMMEDIATE ACTION

    Labour rights legislation ( page 36)

    A new DLP government will move to immediately enact a comprehensive national Labour Rights legislative compendium which will include the following:

     A Full Employment Rights Act
     An Alternative Disputes Settlement and Arbitration Committee
     A Sexual Harassment in the Workplace Act
     National minimum wages legislation
     Legislation fully recognizing Trade Unions.

    Approval of capital account transactions (page 25)

    Immediately review the current Central Bank procedures for approving capital account transactions with a view to simplifying and speeding up the approval (or denial) process for restricted transactions.

    Port charges (page 33)

    The DLP pledges to immediately re-examine the Port charges with a view to significantly reducing these to manufacturers as they consider them to be a burdensome cost. They say that tonnage dues are charged twice; – on raw materials when imported and again on finished products when being exported.

    Integrity legislation (page 48)

    Immediately introduce integrity legislation requiring

     a declaration of assets by public officials,
     a Code of Conduct for Ministers,
     a new Freedom of Information law,
     amendments to the Defamation laws and
     new constitutional provisions to rationalize the powers of the Prime Minister.

    Health issues (page 11)

    A new DLP Government will immediately embark on a health promotion campaign to sensitize the public to the dangers of unhealthy lifestyles

    ISSUES TO BE DEALT WITH IN FIRST 100 DAYS

    Don’t forget the DLP promises to do the following in the first 100 days

     Introduce the Agriculture Protection Act that will require a 2/3 majority of both houses of parliament for a change of use of land from agriculture.

     Remove VAT from building materials on houses valued up to $400,000.
     convene a National Consultation on Education

  4. justice

    Who says that the Nation and the Advocate won’t be there?

  5. Tell me Why

    Who says that the Nation and the Advocate won’t be there?
    ………………………………………………………………………………….
    I am taking the information as reported by the the media houses being represented, namely CBC during Morning Barbados and VOB 7:30 am news.

  6. Tell me Why

    BFP is media too and the can’t be marginalised.
    ………………………………………………………………………………….
    Don’t be smart Hants. I mean the media that have a face. Sorry BFP, your face is hidden due to reality, but you are doing a good job although we have to butt heads, but that’s what blogging is about.

  7. reality check

    okay BLP Donald Duck

    we know, we know

    its hard to marginalize a newspaper like the Nation which has already marginalized itself by failing to be a relevant and credible newspaper with hard hitting investigative journalism.

  8. Jerome Hinds

    BFP,

    When last did a Barbados PM address the Nation and then fielded questions from the press ?

    The last time Owen Arthur address the Nation
    ( 20th Dec 2007 when he announced the election date )……he refused to take questions from the press !

    A show of arrogance & lack of transparency !

  9. Tell me Why

    Jerome, it seems that you are only archiving from December. I am dealing from 1966 until 2007 when former Prime Ministers spoke to the Press and allow all media houses to be present. But again, you need more ‘memory’ to retain and maintain things from the past.

  10. Tell me Why

    The last time Owen Arthur address the Nation
    ( 20th Dec 2007 when he announced the election date )……he refused to take questions from the press !
    …………………………………………………………………………………
    That was not an “Address to the Nation”, it was a Press Announcement informing the date for elections. Two different matters my friend.

  11. Time will Tell

    Lets hope he resigns and does Barbados a favor…..

    Time will Tell

  12. Donald Duck, Esq

    reality check

    Please note that I am not a member of any policital party. I will not stand for a party which makes plans to be carried out “immediately” and in the “first 100 days”

  13. Pingback: Prime Minister David Thompson To Tell Barbadians Like It Is Tonight @7.30PM! « Barbados Underground - bringing the news to the people

  14. Hants

    “A “heavy drag” from the trade sector will push Ontario to the brink of a recession this year, according to a new Royal Bank forecast.”

    “Buffett Says US Economy Essentially in a Recession, Expects Rough Ride for Insurers in 2008
    OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Billionaire Warren Buffett said Monday that the U.S. economy is essentially in a recession even if it hasn’t met the technical definition of one yet.”

    “Global expansion is losing momentum in the face of what has become the largest financial crisis in the US since the Great Depression.”

    Tighten wanna belts. Don’t wait for a miracle. It aint coming.

  15. Green Monkey

    From the International Herald Tribune:

    U.S. housing collapse spreads overseas

    Dublin: The collapse of the housing bubble in the United States is mutating into a global phenomenon, with real estate prices down from the Irish countryside and the Spanish coast to Baltic seaports and even in parts of India.

    This synchronized global slowdown, which has become increasingly stark in recent months, is hobbling economic growth worldwide, affecting not just homes, but also jobs.

    In Ireland, Spain, Britain and elsewhere, housing markets that soared over the past decade are falling back to earth. Experts predict that some countries, like Ireland, will face an even more wrenching adjustment than the United States, with the possibility that the downturn could turn into wholesale collapse.

    To some extent, the world’s problems are a result of American contagion. As home financing and credit tighten in response to the crisis that began in the U.S. subprime market, analysts worry that other countries could suffer the mortgage defaults and foreclosures that have afflicted California, Florida and other states.

    http://www.iht.com/articles/2008/04/13/business/housing.php?page=1

  16. Jerome Hinds

    Time will Tell
    April 14, 2008 at 5:18 pm
    Lets hope he resigns and does Barbados a favor…..

    Time will Tell
    ***************************************
    Nope……!

    You wasting your time !

    Why would a man who in 60 days have exposed:

    * The filth of the BLP !

    * The flawed contracts !

    * The scandulous high priced consultants !

    Ever consider RESIGNING !

    BAJANS ONLY TO GLAD THAT HE IS AT THE HELM…….WITH A MAGNIFICENT TEAM !

    If you do not have a TV get near one in a few hours time…..CBC tv 8…..the action gine be GREAT !

  17. Green Monkey

    The coming collapse of the US middle class (Youtube video):

    Distinguished law scholar Elizabeth Warren teaches contract law, bankruptcy, and commercial law at Harvard Law School. She is an outspoken critic of America’s credit economy, which she has linked to the continuing rise in bankruptcy among the middle-class. Series: “UC Berkeley Graduate Council Lectures”

    (lecture by Professor Warren starts at around the 4:50 mark. Video runs for 57 min).

  18. Time will Tell

    Jerome Hinds
    April 14, 2008 at 8:12 pm

    BAJANS ONLY TO GLAD THAT HE IS AT THE HELM…….WITH A MAGNIFICENT TEAM !

    *************************************************

    I have taken the audaciousness to scrutinize your previous postings. I am strongly of the personal and clinical opinion that are a “delusions of grandeur” convalescent case.

    Get well.

    Time will Tell

  19. Time will Tell

    Green Monkey
    April 14, 2008 at 8:06 pm

    From the International Herald Tribune:

    U.S. housing collapse spreads overseas
    ***************************************************

    What is your point Monkey !

  20. 235

    BFP Quote:

    “But whatever Jerome meant, let’s hope that the Prime Minister isn’t going to try and fool the citizens by announcing “talks” or “studies” on the promised ITAL – Integrity, Transparency, Accountability Legislation instead of real action within the promised 100 day period.”

    Hope? Hope? Hope in vain. Face it you and all the naive young people in this island were hood-winked – its been done before by said DPL and they did it again.

    Nothing’s changed.

  21. Hants

    BFP David Ellis on your theme . Questions about broken promises 100 days etc.

    You sure Ellis is not part of your team?

  22. Hants

    David Ellis has found them.Yes people he has found the male reproductive twins.

    Owing gone,Barney gone and Ellis find the twin gonads.

    He is like a pitbull now.

    If it was Owing, Ellis would not be so “confident”.

    Good to see that he en friten nuh mo.

  23. Tell me Why

    Did you hear the excuses about the declaration of assets and how ‘talented people’ might resist being part of any boards. So don’t look for no Declaration of Assets.

    I mentioned in an earlier post after the Ministry of Trade give away thousands of dollars to Barbados Mills, that we can source cheaper flour including Trinidad, now we are hearing that this same administration is in receipt of cheaper supply of flour. What about the over one million dollars given to our flour supplier. Will this action encompass the rice supplier also.

  24. Tell me Why

    BFP. I have to hand the baton to David Ellis on his forthright questions. And don’t tell me he don’t read the blogs. His questions resemble the BFP.

    Mr. Cox keep interjecting every time David pose a question.

  25. Tell me Why

    David asked:
    How many subsidies the government give out since assuming office? Up to now he have not given a figure.

  26. Tell me Why

    What is the role of Richard Cox in this Press Conference?

  27. reality check

    sounds like the insiders and civil servants are preventing ITAL from going forward.

    No more studies. Time to leave those who refuse to sit on boards and be transparent to retire—permanently!!!

    Let them live off their stolen ill gotten gains

  28. Time will Tell

    WELL DONE DAVID THOMPSON, YOU DID NOT DISAPPOINT ME AT ALL!

    I TOTALLY EXPECTED EVERY BIT OF THE NOTHING YOU HAVE GIVEN

    TIME IS TELLING

  29. Tell me Why

    Wow. Fuel gone up. Gas move from $2.15 to $2.67
    Diesel move from $1.46 to $2.57.

    We have to go back to the coal pot. LPG up, was so vexed that I missed the full amount and I prefer not to give wrong information.

    Are we pleased with the conversation with harsh reality from the PM. BFP, we await your reply.

  30. .36

    … and you were expecting something different or new – naive lot.

    Why don’t you picture the PM in drag like you have the CJ – it would be more fitting.

  31. Hants

    Reality bites.

    Barbados is not the Magic Kingdom.

  32. The Meta Media

    Can anyone provide a transcript of the broadcast?

    How about a stream?

    Anyone?

  33. Hants

    Fuel gone up. Gas move from $2.15 to $2.67

    I paid 2.60 Barbados today for ultra 94 here in Canada and we are a major Oil producer.

    You can cuss the PM if it makes you feel better but the Government can’t keep subsidising indefinitely.

    Recession is the current reality.

    Save your cash,stay out of debt and conserve energy.

  34. Rumplestilskin

    Diesel to 2.57? Are you sure?

    That is a productive sector input, that would make no sense.

  35. Green Monkey

    Diesel to 2.57? Are you sure?

    That is a productive sector input, that would make no sense.

    Thompy said that they were going to announce later a scheme to give direct subsidies to businesses who used diesel. Under the current subsidy system too many consumers were benefiting from the special diesel subsidy which had been intended as a support to businesses, not consumers. That is why they brought the price of diesel more in line with gasoline.

  36. Trained Economist

    The old price of petroleum products was based on a subsidy implemented when the price of oil was $64 a barrel. The oil price is now around $110. The subsidies on gas and diesel had to be adjusted.

    The PM seems to have the courage to take tough decisions. That is good. The last lot were incapable of any tough decisions.

  37. Get in the Action

    Rumple

    Better believe it. He has increased diesel by 76%. After waffling about controling the high cost of living and creating smoke screens about price gauging by merchants, he waits until the last 5 minutes to deliver this fatal blow. The media had no time to respond.

    Do they have any idea of the ripple effect this will have on the economy and not to mention the same cost of living and the same prices on shelves. Overnight he has almost doubled the cost of freighting. This is madness.

    If this is what we can expect from these fire-side chats every three months we’re in for a rough ride.

  38. Rumplestilskin

    Per CNN: Riots from Haiti to Bangladesh to Egypt over the soaring costs of basic foods have brought the issue to a boiling point and catapulted it to the forefront of the world’s attention, the head of an agency focused on global development said Monday.

    Now, did the PM address agrictural land usage and conversion of such or was the question even asked, I could not watch all of the broadcast.

    This issue is central and critical to any economic and social strategy.

  39. Donald Duck, Esq

    Summary of major non-energy issues highlighted by Thompson in his “conversation” with journalists this evening

     VAT only to be removed on houses worth less than $100,000. This is down from the $400,000 limit set by the DLP in their manifesto for action within 100 days of being in Government. This limit is also $50,000 lower than that provided for in the previous government’s housing incentives act
     419 lots of land have been identified for first time homeowners to be purchased at $5 per sq foot for first time homeowners. He did not say how many of these were already earmarked by the last government just before it left government.
     NHC tenants who have been in their houses for 20 years or more will be given their houses free of cost and will only have to pay the legal costs of purchase
     The promised Agriculture Protection Act in the manifesto will not be forthcoming in the first 100 days of the dlp being in office as was promised. The promise that the bill will contain a provision that will require a 2/3 majority of both houses of parliament for a change of use of land from agriculture will not apply and that the minister simply has to notify parliament.
     The promised new “Code of Conduct for Ministers” will not see the light of day for a while since Thompson although being aware there was always an old code of conduct for ministers to follow on taking up office.
     The promised integrity legislation will take a while to be introduced since the government has now realized after studying the Trinidad legislation that such legislation might diminish the pool of resource persons who can be called upon to take up positions on boards.
     There will be a budget within the next 12 weeks

    Nothing was said about the following promises that were supposed to be introduced immediately, namely
    Labour rights legislation

    A new DLP government promised to immediately enact a comprehensive national Labour Rights legislative compendium which will include the following:

     A Full Employment Rights Act
     An Alternative Disputes Settlement and Arbitration Committee
     A Sexual Harassment in the Workplace Act
     National minimum wages legislation
     Legislation fully recognizing Trade Unions.

    Approval of capital account transactions

    The new DLP promised in their manifesto to immediately review the current Central Bank procedures for approving capital account transactions with a view to simplifying and speeding up the approval (or denial) process for restricted transactions.

    Port charges

    The DLP pledged to immediately re-examine the Port charges with a view to significantly reducing these to manufacturers as they consider them to be a burdensome cost. They say that tonnage dues are charged twice; – on raw materials when imported and again on finished products when being exported.

    Health issues

    A new DLP Government promised to immediately embark on a health promotion campaign to sensitize the public to the dangers of unhealthy lifestyles

  40. Rumplestilskin

    N, that is a mistake. As you note, the cost of freighting and storage will increase exponentially to the cost of the diesel input.

    An increase in petrol was to be expected, but not diesel, an input to industry and production.

    Some note the argument that in the UK diesel is around the same price as petrol, but in the UK the diesel quality is substantially better.

    Is this administration also going to tell Kiffin to now bring in the good quality diesel for that price, or will the same cheap diesel be sold at roughly the same price as petrol?

    It is apparent that on the petrol side this is a fair increase, but on the diesel side it is well past.

    The petrol should have been higher and the diesel a smaller increase.

    As it it, this does not adequately achive the two things necessary, the subsidy decrease is only partially saved by the rise in petrol, albeit the massive rise in diesel BUT the foreign exchange will not be saved, as the increase in petrol will not reduce bajans driving for pleasure, which should be one of the aims, in order to reduce the amount used and thus the foreign exchange bill.

    The diesel bill is mainly for production and thus the increase will not result in foreign exchange savings, as producers still need to operate.

    All it means is that Governments internal expenditures will be eased, without addressing the foreign exchange used.

    This is then aggravated by making the cost of production higher and prices higher.

    Does not make sense.

    I think you can expect another rise in petrol in six months, when they realise that this has not impacted foreign exchange, only created internal reduciton in expenditures by Gov’t.

  41. Trained Economist

    I disagree with BFP on the integrity legislation issue. I really cannot accept your “pass the damn legislation and deal with the issues after.” That is a reckless approach given that ITAL will not only affect politicians.

    How many honest bajans would think twice about serving on a board if they were required to disclose their assets? I think quite a few. Should that consideration not make you look more carefully at the details of any such legislation. Should it be limited only to the chairmen of boards. Should it apply to all boards, if not which boards will be exempt.

    These seems like reasonable details to me that need careful consideration.

    You criticize a cut and paste job yet you say there is no need to reinvent the wheel, which suggests that there are models out there that can be easily copied.

    The government is right to exercise caution on this issue and to consult widely before any implementation. If in one year’s time they are still no closer I will then begin to beat up on them.

    This initiative certainly was not on the policy agenda of the last government. I do not see the new government abandoning the issue, but rather asking for some time to sort out what seem to me to be some relevant details.

    In taking such hardline positions BFP comes across as arrogant and self righteous as the politicians and public officials it criticises.

    *********************

    BFP says,

    Hardline?

    It was David Thompson who promised to adopt a Ministerial Code immediately. It is David Thompson who refuses transparency on his use of bizjets provided by entities that profit from government contracts. It is David Thompson who said he would declare HIS assets and has not done so.

    You ask how many Honest Bajans will serve on a board if required to disclose their assets? Answer: Plenty… Certainly more honest ones will disclose their assets and serve on a board than dishonest ones!

    Oh yes, the business and political elites are all upset about rules.

    Good, honest citizens will be proud to serve on boards even if it means some disclosure process.

    Dishonest citizens know that a disclosure process will keep them from boards.

    Makes sense to us!

  42. Bajanboy

    The price of gasoline and diesel should be allowed to fluctuate on weekly basis and suppliers should be free to set their own prices.

    The government cannot afford to subsidise these products. Small increases every week are more palatable that a huge increase every six months.

    Too many Bajans are driving vehicles that get poor mileage and emit huge amounts of CO2. High prices will encourage people to buy more fuel efficient vehicles. I am glad especially that diesel has gone up close to the price of gasoline, for too many people used this price disparately to justify buying large SUVs.

  43. Rumplestilskin

    ”That is why they brought the price of diesel more in line with gasoline.”

    Like the UK? So will we also get the good quality diesel like the UK gets or still the cheap stuff?

    Better call Kiffin and tell him to get the good stuff in, we are paying for it.

  44. Donald Duck, Esq

    The Minister failed to tell us how much government revenue is being lost with the removal of the excise and vat on diesel and gas

  45. Rumplestilskin

    The proportion of consumers benefitting from cheap diesel (both in price and quality) are small in comparison to the users driving petrol cars.

    In addition, a direct subsidy scheme will be difficult to administer and create issues for small businesses.

  46. Bajanboy

    I believe that there will be a special dispensation for those in the distributive sector that consume large amounts of diesel.

  47. Sam Gamgee

    Rump, the PM said that an area from Archers Bay to Consett or Skeete’s Bay ( it was not clear which) was to remain in Bajan hands; as Min. in charge of T&C Planning. I guess they do read the blogs.

    About agriculture he was not naive he kept it quite real. Agriculture is faced with so many issues that we cannot imagine that it is just going to turn around like that. But of course time will tell.

    I thought it was a very good interview except for the early response to the cost of living question. But that might have been nerves. He is only human.

  48. Rumplestilskin

    I think this administration is taking advice from Wall Street too literally and from people who do not understand the underlying economy properly before giving advice.

  49. me again

    What an interview! The Newspapers were conspicuous in their absence.

    David will be in for some licks tomorrow, after raising the cost of living by more than a few gallons of gas (not only the kind you get at the pump) tonight. But one must wonder what Bajans expected; it’s one thing to stop the the bleeding but another thing entirely to heal the wound, or more aptly multiple lacerations and massive internal hemmorhaging left by the previous administration.

    Even as we throw barbs about corporate jets (for the record a BAD-cubed PR move by the new g’ment, no matter how David spins it) and ITAL food David & Co. clearly aren’t ready to share with us yet, I hope that BFP and the rest of us can bring the same level of maturity that removed a malfunctioning g’ment to bear on the fact that, as a first world debutante, we, represented by a prudent g’ment, have to be big boys and girls and face the harsh realities of engaging in the first world economy where our taste for imported indulgences we cannot make ourselves can quickly break our tiny budget.

    And for those of you weeping and gnashing over the 100-day promises, tsk-tsk. Like any other opposition political party zealously grasping at power, promises were made to secure the undecided vote and without the foreknowledge of what confusion and delay lay on the other side of victory. Opposition candidates who quite honestly didn’t expect to get a seat, far less a ministry, never really expected to have to go ITAL, and the PM himself rather naiively under-estimated the flight of talent from politically sensitive positions where keeping one’s financial affairs private is one of the few bastions left.

    I finally will give David props for calling a spade the monopolistic structure that it is/was/may be once New and Mighty has assimilated it. For years, the high prices set by some major players in the distributive sector have created an upward spiral of increased wages and taxes to accommodate each round of price increases. Let’s hope N&M and other MNCs can eject some productivity and efficiency into our business DNA. Enough said … looking forward to the other comments and the call-in programmes tomorrow.

    ********************

    BFP says,

    You view ITAL as “nice to have whenever”, perhaps as icing on the cake.

    We know ITAL is foundational to everything else – significantly impacting everything including the cost of living and about 99% of the excesses and failures of the last government.

    A legacy that will certainly be shared by the Thompson government if integrity issues are again put aside as is happening right now.

  50. Sam Gamgee

    One thing is clear. You cannot please all the people all the time.

  51. Rumplestilskin

    Sam Gamgee:

    I agree entirely. Really it was a well presented interview and I have no problems with his presentation.

    I am not even ‘gnashing’ about the 100 day promises.

    My basis for worry is purely economic and I have seen what I believe to be a mistake.

    I do give him credit for the interview in the first place, without doubt. I also give him credit for addressing both monopolies and interlocking directorships.

    Nevertheless, I say it as I see it.

    Peace.

  52. me again

    By the way, I want all theBFP bloggers to unplug everything (note I said unplug not just turn off) in their houses but their fridges and freezers when they leave for work every week day for 1 month. If your light bill doesn’t come down by half you can come back here and cuss me.

  53. .36

    “It is apparent that on the petrol side this is a fair increase, but on the diesel side it is well past.

    The petrol should have been higher and the diesel a smaller increase.”

    Yeah, right. This was only done because the majority of businesses, from their CEO back down that had company vechicles (note, I did not say cars as would have been said 10-20+ years ago) were diesel – i.e. they reduce their cost of travel and but maintain or increase their prices.

  54. Cliverton Not Signed In

    Yes.. the phantom power draw is deadly. I’d tell you how I handle that at my home, but it would give me away! 🙂

  55. John

    What happens to the manufacturers who use diesel to produce electricity to save on electricity rates?

    Is it only diesel for vehicles that will increase?

  56. no name

    The only reason “honest” Bajans might be hesitant to disclose their assets is that the weak and oppressed among us will see the huge conflicts of interest which exist that have contributed to the lawlessness and led to the destruction of our once great country.

  57. me again

    To BFP:
    You are an idealist, and that’s why I enjoy this forum. The world needs more like you.

    That said, it may be necessary to limit the ITAL food you are so hungry for to what the people eat after they get at the trough – er, I mean the job, and not what they had to eat in their earlier days in Babylon. This way (like in U.S. divorce law) you get to keep (private )what you came in with, while maintaining public transparency for the necessary period. Let us hope that David & Co. find a way to balance the public trust with the in-alienable human right to privacy in their own best interest as politicians and as an elected government.

  58. Red Lake Lassie

    Where is this Draft Integrity Legislation that Thompson talked about? It was not in the package that he released during the election.

    Was Thompson confused about what he put “out there” ?

    That is my guess. Thompson doesn’t care for ITAL and he doesn’t know that he did not put draft legislation “out there”!!!

    I think we bought a new piggy in a poke.

    Mark my words childrens: TIME FOR A NEW PARTY

    Next year this time you will know I speak the truth.

  59. Red Lake Lassie

    no name said:

    “The only reason “honest” Bajans might be hesitant to disclose their assets is that the weak and oppressed among us will see the huge conflicts of interest which exist that have contributed to the lawlessness and led to the destruction of our once great country.”

    Amen, brother. Amen.

  60. Anonymous

    This I find odd and I would like someone to explain.

    Yes, the international PRICE of OIL has been going up but these are MARKET prices, which have no relation to actual production COST, local or otherwise.

    Pray tell, why are we bound to these market prices in the first place (which sounds like an international monopoly – done deal, I know but only because everyone ‘accepts’ it), whilst accepting that, why would the Barbados National Oil Company (BNOC) be operating at a LOST if they subsidise locally supplied Oil.

    You only make a Lost when Expenses/Costs exceed Revenue, in principle.

    So please explain how the BNOC could be making a loss, according to the PM, et al., when their costs have probably not made any major increases (unless there is some accounting ‘booked’ cost whenever there is an increase in the ‘market’ price of oil, which is ‘imaginary’ to say the least), so why their loss?

    One would imagine that the BNOC would profit from an an International increase in Oil prices.

    What gives?

  61. GreenBB

    me again… I am trying that, what about the washer/dryer and things like lamps that are clearly switched off? Thanks…

  62. Hants

    Some companies will tell their High Priced management not to sit on boards if they have to declare their income but I think that is a price the Government will have to pay.

    I regret that I cannot offer my fellow Barbadians much sympathy because I am faced with rising Gasoline and food prices here in Canada so you should cut back just like I have to.

    Barbadians cannot the Government to subsidise indefinitely.

    Tighten your belts my friends. Welcome to the First world where you got to pay.It is called Capitalism.

  63. Tell me Why

    I thought it was a very good interview except for the early response to the cost of living question. But that might have been nerves. He is only human.
    …………………………………………………………………………………..
    Can you tell me the TV station you watched, I sure the majority of Bajans think otherwise. As far as I see, it was one journalist who did the majority of questioning from a partisan prepared script. Is the Cost of Living reduction we were dying to hear?

  64. Sam Gamgee

    me again,
    I heard tonight that persons in a certain nameless country unplug the refrigerator at night. Kind of like when there is a power cut during a hurricane or something. I have to ask a friend at BL&P if that is feasible or if that won’t have the opposite effect.

  65. So Long

    BFP
    Good, honest citizens will be proud to serve on boards even if it means some disclosure process.

    I agree, but in Trinidad did this initiative not lead to kidnappings?

    John
    Didn’t realise that manufacturers used diesel, I thought they used something called Bunker C.

    David Ellis was really not bad this time around, Kaymar was clearly out of her depth, and that man Cox…my God!

    I believe to that Government should get out of the Event planning and Coach business and start up Municipal markets that will compete in the area of food retail, thereby forcing the price.

  66. Hants

    Partisan politics aside, Barbados is in trouble because prices are going up around the world and America and Canada are facing Recession.

    There is no magic. Barbadians will have to deal with reality.

    If there is no quick recovery in the world economy Barbados is in for more economic pain.

    It is up to you living there to conserve and spend carefully.

  67. So Long

    Anonymous
    If the PM said BNOC I believe that would have been an error. The BNOC exports oil to TnT. It is the Barbados National Terminal Co Ltd that does the importation and is probably the one carrying the loss

  68. Politically Incorrect

    The bottom line is:

    You have been deceived………..ha, ha, ha!!!

  69. Anonymous

    Politically Incorrect
    April 15, 2008 at 3:23 am

    The bottom line is:

    You have been deceived………..ha, ha, ha!!!
    ***********************

    I cannot say that I disagree …

  70. Happy To Say

    I must give PM Thompson high marks for trying to explain away why his (my) DLP admin did not immediately embrace integrity legislation once assuming power. However, I must caution him that he is threading on very thin ice.

    He promised us in his manifesto that integrity legislation and a newly elected DLP admin were inextricably inseparable. At the time we believed him/ DLP and gave him our X in 2/3 of the precincts (I do not live in the US).

    I am going to warn DLP and PM Thompson that if they try to pull the wool over our eyes regarding integrity legislation he would guarantee that his government is the first one term government since Nov 1966.

    PLEASE we do not want a return to a BLP government in 2013 or before.

  71. Hants

    Politically Incorrect says
    “You have been deceived………..ha, ha, ha!!!”

    Yes you have. By a Government who spent the last 14 years on Capital projects with cost pverruns that now have to be paid for and….
    Consultants who got paid with your money.

    Its not funny. Now turn off your computer and save some electricity He He He!!!
    Just joking.

  72. Jerome Hinds

    BFP,

    As I indicated……PM Thompson’s presentation had all the essence of the 3 R’s !

    Riveting……Rigorous…….Reassuring !

    BARBADOS…….a small but vibrant country and people…….how long could a country with little or no natural resources continue to subsudise fuel in a volatile global environment ?

    PM Thompson demonstrted tough mettle by putting an end to fuel subsidies .

    Any major public policy SHOULD be implemented against the background of the widest level of Public consultation…….I am elated to see the adoption of an ITAL policy will go that route .

    I look forward to the budget proposals.

  73. Jerome Won't Mention The Jet

    Jerome Hinds IS the new Royal Rumble.

  74. akabozik

    Mr. Prime Minister: Where is this Draft Integrity Legislation that you said is “out there”?

    I want to know the answer to that question too. Well Jerome? Where is it?

    Bulls**t pure and simple.

    The DLP does not have draft Integrity Legislation “out there”.

  75. 36

    Jerome Hinds:
    Why would a man who in 60 days have exposed:
    * The filth of the BLP !
    * The flawed contracts !
    * The scandulous high priced consultants !
    Ever consider RESIGNING !

    BECAUSE his Government will continue to do the same thing or seem to, because more directly, it is the Civil Servants that make things happen or NOT happen.

    Forget the Politicians, target the Civil Service and its integrity, letharigy and potential corruption, if you really want to make a difference.

  76. 36

    Now, when will BFP decide that Jerome Hinds is no more than the reflection of what they (the BFP) rejected (and banned) in the recent past.

  77. 36

    Jerome Hinds: sounds like the devil’s advocate of the BFP but still part and partial of the same.

  78. Jason

    BFP, there is nothing in the Nation this morning about Thompson’s comments on integrity legislation. Your favorite topic is on “ignore” by the press. 🙂

  79. paul sealy

    After all is said and done in another couple of months it won’t matter who is running Barbados,for those who were not aware the Caribbean made significant overall growth in many sectors last year,the outside world especially our friends the World Bank doesn’t like that,so if you really think that they don’t want us eating mud cakes like the Haitians you are sadly mistaken,things are about to get significantly worse.
    http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/5D2AF197-DB1F-4BD4-BCD3-7374B3B1D3A7.htm

  80. paul sealy

    One more thing,anyone who thinks that the World Bank,IMF,WHO and other organizations of this kind aren’t run by the Illuminati whose main goal is to reduce the earth’s population will be in for a very big surprise,do people really think these ne0-cons have your best interests at heart??

  81. Cancerman

    My disaapointment with Thompy is not realised. In less than a blink of an eye he goes from hero to zero.

    To not lay ITAL in Parliament since Green Verbs frighten than Fay find out how much money he got in truth is no excuse.

    Let’s call a spade a spade it is not a change – it is a LIE!!

    Be a man and do what you said !!!

  82. Morning all,

    I was just surprised that the PM actually went on the air to answer questions. Has anything like this ever been done by a PM or public official in the island’s political past? I certainly can’t recall (but then again, I’m old and my memory is not what it used to be).

    Now as to whether or not he actually answered the questions, and how he answered them, is to me, another matter entirely (as I said, I was just surprised that he went on air). However, judging by the torrent of comments on this BFP post, his responses are the meat of the matter.

    In any case, I’m hoping that we can all look forward to more interviews and discussions from the PM (whether it be a D, B or X), in the future.

    Rgds,
    Amit.

  83. Rumplestilskin

    Manufacturers, farmers, distribution, retail, construction companies large and small, tradesmen (carpenters, plumbing and electrical), garden and lawn maintenance contractors, delivery companies, all collection and delivery for small bakeries etc, ice cream companies, transport such as taxis and minivans.

    All of these use diesel in production and / or daily operations.

    This will be a nightmare to administer, I guess it calls for another office such as the VAT office?

    Unless the subsidy is restricted to a few larger firms, but if so, why???

    All provide legitimate jobs and are part of the productivity and economy.

    If restricted to a few, then the small guys have options. Either pass the cost to the consumer or eliminate an employee or two to make up the fuel charge cost.

    As I said, there should have been an increase in diesel, but 76% is much too great and out of the ballpark.

    The big increase should have been on petrol.

    Peace.

  84. Rumplestilskin

    Another increase will come on petrol by year end.

  85. Tony Hall

    If anyone on this blog did not expect a price increase in fuel then it shows the lack of understanding of what is going on in the world. Gas in New York is going up everyday. Last night I was going to stop by a gas station close to where I live. I decided to do it early this morning and lo and behold the price went up by 6 cents. Barbadians are going to have to make a concerted effort to conserve. Car pooling can be a good start.

  86. So Long

    Petro Caribe, seriously, why not? And what about the plans for alternative energy, like the use of natural gas PSV’s and private vehicles?

    Tompson may be a one term administration, but le’ ma tell ya, Owing di’nt get na four luv, an’ da sweet me.

  87. Sam Gamgee

    Tony Hall,
    that is the difference between the great USA and this island living behaviour we got down here. I would have expected that a responsible gov’t would have started to pass on the price of fuel slowly over time a long time ago but instead it was politically expedient for the past one not to do it. So now we are here today.
    Only a true Bajan would know and accept that we have to do something about the situation. There is no manna from heaven.
    Mia is a politician who seems to believe that the only party who can run B’dos is hers. Arrogance to the height. Talking about incompetence. If her governance in the past was so perfect why was it booted out?

  88. Citizen First

    With the projected high costs of food and energy (which will thus affect everything else), integrity legislation et al is a of a very distant concern to me.

    I am concerned that Mr Thompson along with much of the leadership of this country (including the BLP, the civil service, private sector, etc) seem to really have no idea as to what to do in the face of the coming storm.

    The much maligned V.S. Naipaul once opined that the future of the C’bean is Haiti! What could he have meant?

  89. X

    BFP it would be real big of you to give Ellis the credit he deserves for his performance last night. I think he did a fantastic job.

  90. Deep Midwicket

    Happy to Say wrote:

    “I must give PM Thompson high marks for trying to explain away why his (my) DLP admin did not immediately embrace integrity legislation once assuming power. However, I must caution him that he is threading on very thin ice.”

    1. “De cheque in de mail.”
    2. “I jes about to phone yuh!”
    3. “De integrity legislation need a few lil changes. But doan worry — a committee hoalin’ meetings, an public hearings, an in a few more months, yuh gon fuhget all bout it!”

  91. Get in the Action

    Jerome Hinds said:

    “As I indicated……PM Thompson’s presentation had all the essence of the 3 R’s !

    Riveting……Rigorous…….Reassuring !”

    Jerome I can tell you how Barbadians felt after last night’s performance:

    Railroaded……..Rejected…….Reeling!!!!!!

    And I agree with X that David Ellis brought some credibility back to Barbadian journalism.

  92. robin hood

    BFP and everyone else,
    I have just one question for everyone in Barbados.
    SO, What did you expect? Barbados wanted the DLP. They so chose on Jan15. Now obviously Bajans have to understand that when one makes their bed that one then has to lie in it. Suffer folks……… for 5 years! The DLP is there now and there ain’t nuttin’ we gonna be able to do about it now. Like it or lump it! Remember those words of the last DLP administration?

  93. So Long

    robin hood
    Wrong. Barbados wants good governance (I so arrogant to speak for other people). In cricket you switch bowlers around until you get it right. Seems we only have two bowlers for the moment.

  94. So Long

    Mia Mottley shut down a whole country on a storm watch.. a storm watch!… Now seriosly…

  95. Straight talk

    Re; Ellis’ performance.

    The mark of a good journalist is not in the asking of the question, it is the skill and perseverance to get a satisfactory answer from an unwilling source.

    DT was allowed to waffle and wander off topic and so sidestep the questions we all wanted answered.

  96. Trained economist

    I must admit that i seem to really misunderstand my own country. The logic presented on this blog sems to suggest that having something to hide would be the main reason someone would not want to reveal their asstes.

    My understanding of bajan society suggests to me that a large number of honest perosns would be rather reluctant to bare your financial position for all in Barbados to see?

    I certainly would be a litle embarassed revealing how poor and indebted I a really am.

  97. Straight talk

    I cannot imagine that the asset declaration of public servants would be published in the press.

    More likely the register of interests would be kept on file by the authority charged with enforcing the legislation.

    As to the pool of people willing to serve the public interest being reduced by the unavailabilty of those refusing to adopt the new regime, I say good riddance…. the purpose of ITAL is transparency and those of so little integrity who will not submit to scrutiny are exactly the jobsworths we should be weeding out of public life.

  98. robin hood

    So Long,

    So governing a country has now become simply a game of cricket. Best one I heard in a long time!
    Ha, ha,ha. Good laugh, only thing is the joke is now on all us Bajans!!! Face it WE WERE ALL TAKEN FOR A JOY RIDE ON JAN. 15th. by a group of liars!

  99. John

    So Long
    April 15, 2008 at 3:08 am

    John
    Didn’t realise that manufacturers used diesel, I thought they used something called Bunker C.
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Don’t really know either hence my question.

    I do know the Low Speed Diesels at BL&P run on Bunker C but don’t know if the smaller units a manufacturer would use would also run on Bunker C.

    Suspect if there is an increase in diesel due to the cost of oil that Bunker C will go up too.

    Probably the same difference.

    What I find interesting is why was the price differential between diesel and gas moved from about 70 cents to 10 cents?

    Means there is no incentive to use diesel engines although diesel is supposeddly cheaper than gasolene.

    The pricing seems artificial to me.

  100. Thistle

    Well, if anything good emerged from the Press Conference last night, it was the fact that David Ellis et al were ALLOWED to use their journalistic skills unfettered! We all know that this would not have happened with Owen Arthur. Having said that, NOT GOOD ENOUGH. I’m talking about the excuses for the delay in ITAL. Why the hell did you promise “100 days” and not keep that promise? It would have been far more sensible to promise ITAL, leaving out the time factor. I still believe that it will be done, but the mistake was promising it in 100 days.
    As regards the soaring fuel prices, well, I was taught from an early age to “cut and contrive” and I’ve been doing that nearly all my life. I have a mauby pocket and NO champagne taste!

  101. rumboy

    The large increase on diesel will have a serious impact on the cost of living. Food prices will increase even more now simply because of transportation. Truckers will obviously pass on this increase. I fail to understand this move, I really do. With regards to flour, perhaps wholesalers and distributors will look at Trinidad for flour as the 35% increase by ADM is way too harsh. Bajans are in for a long and hard ride and the increase on electricity has not been ascertained as yet. Perhaps we should relook at Petrocaribe.

  102. rumboy

    robinhood – harsh. Do you really think that this started on Jan 15th. All that is happening is that this Goverment has got to put these measures in place now because of the global situation. If the BLP had regained the Goverment the same measures would be instituted and that is a fact.

  103. Gilly

    “If anyone on this blog did not expect a price increase in fuel then it shows the lack of understanding of what is going on in the world. ”

    Noone is surprised about the price increase in fuel. What you are seeing is that some people on this blog are slowly coming to the realization that they should have taken campaign promises (of lower costs of living) with a grain (maybe a few grains) of salt.

    Like I have said before…there is not much difference between the parties; in fact (especially at the Minister level) the current government and their idealism is the same as the BLP was 14 years ago.

    If they last that long, (and as de old people say, “if God spare muh life”) we will see the reverse in 14 years…

  104. ROBOT

    “If the BLP had regained the Goverment the same measures would be instituted and that is a fact ”
    ———————————————————

    I DISAGREE
    this economy has always been a challenge
    you have to be a top dawg to run it

    Owen Arthur is the man
    Tom Adams
    Errol Barrow

    These men understand/understood this boom and bust economy
    Thompson cannot, I repeat cannor run it

    the challenges Thompson faced now are not new
    the election promises were bare crap

  105. justice

    Thistle, I agree with you. Why was there these references to “in 100 days” and “immediately”? You don’t get any prize if you should achieve it in that time; it would not have mattered to the electorate if you had said six months; and we have gone a lifetime without such legislation, what was the rush? Now it seems only fair to criticise the new administration for a broken promise; a promise it did not have to put a time frame on at all!

  106. ROBOT

    I am willing to declare my assets
    I am declaring that i have 5 cents
    I am willing to serve

  107. Hants

    I am surprised that apparently intelligent people can,t understand thet Barbados cannot borrow money indefinitely to subsidise food and gas.

    Stop complaining and use your brains.

    Spend less, drive less and conserve Electricity.

    Monitor the world price for Oil and commodities and that will help you make decisions about your personal spending.

    Just accept that Barbados is part of the rest of the world. A great place to live but it is not Utopia.

  108. Hants

    IT is reported in the Nation that MIA said
    “We are horrified at the extent of the price increase in one go for energy, coming as it does days after a 30 per cent increase in flour. It is an assault on the middle class and the poor, as everything in Barbados will now go up because
    of the wide use of both flour and energy . . . “.

    Well I am NOT surprised that an opportunistic politician pretends not to understand the need to pay your bills and stop increasing your DEBT load.

    She should have gone on any of the news networks and check the price of oil.

    It is now $113.54 US at 9.53 am

    Bajans forget politics.

    In the words of our famous Philosophers The Dratons Two.

    Yuh got to Pay eh eh eh eh eh.

  109. Moss

    What a disappointment!
    I don’t ever recall seeing a PM so unprepared at a press conference and being so wishy washy in response to important issues. His casual attire was quite fitting for his flippant and cavalier responses.

    I think Barbados now has its own home-grown G.W Bush.

    Also, except for Ellis, the journalists also seemed unprepared and were not willing to grill him.

  110. anonlegal

    Hants said:

    “I am surprised that apparently intelligent people can,t understand thet Barbados cannot borrow money indefinitely to subsidise food and gas.

    Stop complaining and use your brains.”

    ——————————

    I agree with you but it seems to me that the people are more upset at the fact that promises were made that can not be kept.

    It may very well be that this price hike was inevitable. However PM Thompson did accuse the BLP of not effectively tackling the high cost of living in Barbados and now that he is in office, there is a large increase in the cost of living. To the average barbadian it seems like a broken promise.

    That is the problem with politicians saying the things that people want to hear.

  111. rumboy

    How can an economy be managed when oil goes from 50 to 110 dollars a barrel and do it without an increase in cost of living, impossible. I say again, what we are seeing now is inevitable a happening regardless of who is the PM.

  112. cooligan

    the PM has said that approved businesses will receive relief from the diesel prices. I fully agree. If you purchase a F150 or 250 to drive to work in the town and sit down at a desk well then be prepared to face huge diesel and gas costs. That was your choice. You could have been gas and energy conscious. SUBSIDISED DIESEL WAS NOT FOR YOU. If you cant handle the upkeep well park it.

  113. JC

    No body aint asking about the 100 million dollars the pm talk about; can anyone shed some light on this amount of money.

  114. Adrian Hinds

    Hants
    April 15, 2008 at 2:12 pm
    I am surprised that apparently intelligent people can,t understand thet Barbados cannot borrow money indefinitely to subsidise food and gas.

    Stop complaining and use your brains.

    Spend less, drive less and conserve Electricity.

    Monitor the world price for Oil and commodities and that will help you make decisions about your personal spending.

    Just accept that Barbados is part of the rest of the world. A great place to live but it is not Utopia.
    ===================================

    Hant don’t waste your breath, remember the hue and cry that existed in Barbados about the introduction of mandatory seatbelts? and more recently there where some Bajans against instituting a drinking age limit. What i have started to do is engage my many Barbadian friends via email about the world situation, about consumerism, and about reducing their carbon footprint thereby saving some money. You know it is funny, that the way my Father lives “Do it yourself” is a multibillion dollar industry in America. Bajans and others in developing countries have pioneered a lot of things out of neccesity that are now making other people a lot of money, whether it be “do it yourself” or eating what you grow kitchen gardens (organic at home gardens) and so many other things. Today i purchase two rain Barrels to capture rain water from my roof, to save money on my water and sewer bill. What bolstered my resolve to make this purchase? My parents did the same thing in Barbados (slightly different reasons) with two 55 gallon drums.

  115. Tell me Why

    Last night I was going to stop by a gas station close to where I live. I decided to do it early this morning and lo and behold the price went up by 6 cents.
    ………………………………………………………………………………….
    Tony, you are moaning over 6 cents = Bds12 cents and you have no problem. Well, we had an increase of 26c = Bds52 cents on gas and 55c = Bds$1.11 on diesel in one go and you feel that we should be celebrating?

  116. cooligan

    Tell me why

    Well, we had an increase of 26c = Bds52 cents on gas and 55c = Bds$1.11 on diesel in one go and you feel that we should be celebrating?

    —————————————————————

    $8 million in fuel Subsidy = 96 million a year. Do you have any Idea what that can do to a Balance of Payment Schedule? This is the right move for the country. Support for the productive users and FORCE indisciminate users to conserve. Be rational in your usage or face the full costs. It is what it is.

  117. Trained economist

    but Straight talk is that not precsiely the kind of detail that needs to be worked out. Who would have access to this information and under what circumstances.

    We should be offering constructive criticism in this area to help advance ITAL rether than just playing gotcha and bitching if things are not done exactly as BFP suggests.

  118. cooligan

    Its like the proverbial boiling of a frog. put him in cold water and increase the heat gradually and he doesn’t notice until he is already boiled. drop him in hot water and he jumps out instantly. By shocking people with these increases which actually reflect the cost of fuel You force them to react and hopefully to conserve and tighten their belts. It could not be business as usual with spiralling fuel costs which show no sign of abating.

  119. Tell me Why

    $8 million in fuel Subsidy = 96 million a year. Do you have any Idea what that can do to a Balance of Payment Schedule?
    ………………………………………………………………………………….
    Bajans benefited from the subsidy. How about the over 1 million dollars in flour subsidy to ADM in just three months? Did you benefited? What about the feed subsidy to B’dos Feeds?

  120. Tell me Why

    While we are harping over fuel prices, Clico is moving ahead to construct 200 condos, building hotel stock and refurbishment on the main building.

    Where are the voices that were complaining about the building of Condos? Tell me Why the deafening silence.

  121. cooligan

    the flour subsidy might have been misguided but if so blame the technocrats who conceptualised and evaluated the proposal inadequately. Although the Government bears final responsibility, in reality they follow recommendations which may appear sound but may have been based on inadequated or flawed info and premises.

  122. cooligan

    where exactly, though? On the west Coast again??

  123. reality check

    X

    Sam Lords needs a good infusion of capital and some good mangement. This is a good thing for Barbados whether it is Clico or any other company. We should know the terms of the deal, however?

    There is very little a government can do when the price of oil doubles in a very short period of time.

    The real disappointing news is the failure to deliver ITAL. Further studies, public hearings and concerns about senior people signing on to transparency is really a reflection of a government not prepared to follow through on its promises. The excuses really don’t pass the smell test.

    It is probably time to seek a group of people who are prepared to run as independents on a “green” and “ITAL” platform.

  124. Trained economist

    `FISCAL SANITY IS ON THE WAY BACK

    Congratulations to the Hon. David Thompson. Finally, finally, fiscal sanity is returning to Barbados after the tax, borrow and spend orgy of the last 14 years. At last some grown ups are running the country, and they realize that you cannot tax, borrow and spend as if there is no tomorrow.
    According to the latest Central Bank statistics, in 1997 the overall debt of Barbados was $2.7 billion. At the end of last year the national debt stood at $5.3 billion. That is a 96.30% increase in the national debt in ten years. If we are generous and allow for a compound GDP growth rate of 4% per year over this period GDP would have grown by 48.02% over the same period, about half the increase in the level of the debt.
    This debt build up occurred despite a significant increase in government revenues from the Value Added Tax introduced in 1996. A major selling point of the VAT was its role in restructuring the tax base of Barbados in anticipation of trade liberalization and the consequent loss of tax revenues from import duties and trade related taxes.
    While we have given up consumption tax revenues, over the last ten years revenues from import duties have swelled from $91,431,000 to $167,593,000, taxes on income have moved from $397,589,000 to $810,340,000 and revenues on excise taxes from $22,383,000 to $137,232,000. Over the same period the intake from VAT moved from $74,906,000 to $648,343,000. Despite solid government revenues or maybe because of it, government expenditure has expanded to a point where any loss of tax revenues from import duties and trade related taxes will still leave the country in a fiscally vulnerable position.
    It is equivalent to taking some of your children’s money to put aside for a rainy day and licking it out before the rainy day arrives. This all happened under the watch of a government that at one time boasted four economists with graduate degrees. They should be locked away somewhere in an Economics jail.
    The policy in terms of petroleum products is one of the most blatant examples of the negligence, profligacy and economic folly of the Owen Arthur administration (which Ms. Mottley seems to be surprisingly endorsing). Prior to the adjustment in the prices of petroleum products announced by the Prime Minister last night, the price of these products to the consumer was based on a subsidy put in place when the oil price was around $64 per barrel. The latest oil price is around $110 per barrel. The oil price has increased 71.88% but the prices have remained unchanged in Barbados. In their thirst for a fourth term the last administration kept prices in Barbados constant while oil prices spiraled. The policy has been costing the treasury about $8 million per month since it has been in place.
    The people of Barbados must decide if they are going to reward and pander to the criminal economic negligence and fiddling while Rome burnt practiced by the Owen Arthur administration, or give the new skipper the support and understanding he needs as he takes the tough decisions required at this critical juncture in our development as a country. I for one am thankful that some semblance of fiscal sanity is returning to public affairs in this fair land.

  125. So Long

    ROBOT
    April 15, 2008 at 2:11 pm
    I am willing to declare my assets
    I am declaring that i have 5 cents
    I am willing to serve

    Don’t do that, you might get kidnap

  126. So Long

    Hants,
    Yuh got to Pay eh eh eh eh eh.

    the overwhelming majority of people that pay for gas at the pumps do not supply the National Oil Terminal with what it needs to import oil, that comes from the Current Account, … you know, foreign exchnge. All that this increase will mean is more money for SOL and Exxon, retailers of petreleum products. That’s it no Pay eh eh eh eh eh.

  127. cooligan

    so long , It doesnt seem as if you can add. Since Government provided the subsidy it meant that if SOL were to receive $2 for each litre of gas then the GoB paid $1, through the BNOTCL providing oil at a below market price and the Consumer paid the other dollar. Now the Subsidy has been eliminated the Consumer pays the entire $2.00 to SOL and EXXON through the gas station while BNOTCL provides fuel to SOL and EXXON at a market driven price. SOL and EXXON do not receive any more money. Its just that their revenue comes solely from the consumer which is how it should be . Pay for what you use!!!

  128. Time will Tell

    I am not one to bite my lip, however, It hurts to be in agreement with BFP on this issue.

    Our current Government DID NOT come to office on the promise of a more manageable economy only. “ITAL” was a fundamental platform on which they stood.
    How can we forget that the Bajan public were told of “massive corruption, fiscal abuse, fraud and nepotism throughout, yet asked to ignore.
    All of which was a pie in the sky nonetheless.
    Barbadian elections have never seen this magnitude of finger pointing, accusations and characters assignations over a vote, all funded, organized and executed by David and his henchmen.

    Within in a matter of hours in office, he uses 2 separate private jets one’s of Kiffin Simpson and the other from Clico, all previous clients of his legal practice. Every political movement has its base which represents its core values. David Thompson has already ignored his.

    Sadly to say, you’ve got what you asked for. Nothing!

    Time is indeed Telling…..

  129. Thewhiterabbit

    While BFP is singlemindedly concerned with ITAL, there were other discrepancies last night. Mr. Thompson alluded to the government subsidy for fuel prices. Hogwash!!!! Right now the world cost for gasoline is right around $1.50 per litre. Any price you pay higher than that is a reflection of the TAX on the fuel. If the National Oil Terminal is in debt for $60 million, that is only tax money owed by one department of government to another, robbing Peter to pay Paul. It is not a debt owed outside the country. Mr. Chavez in Venezuela subsidizes the price of fuel where gasoline costs 25 cents a gallon. What government has done here is to forego tax money. Foregoing tax money is most definitely NOT the same as subsidizing the price of fuel. It is time to call it what it is! What Mr. Thompson announced last night was a revision (massively upward) of the tax structure on gasoline, diesel, LP, and kerosene, not any change in the actual cost of the fuels. In other words, Mr. Thompson raised your taxes (at least for those of you who either drive, or who cook or illuminate with kerosene or LP). Actually, what he really did was to raise the price of fuels to begin to recover tax money that had been eroded by the rise in the price of the basic commodity, but that gets really complicated. This action was taken at the same time that he cried crocodile tears over trying to lower the cost of living. If Mr. Thompson were actually trying to lower the cost of living, then raising the TAX on fuels, an increase that will be paid primarily by the middle class public, and a cost increase that will find its way into the price of practically everything bought by anybody on this island, seems a mighty poor way to proceed. If he were really interested in lowering the cost of living, then he might have continued with a reduced tax regime on fuels for the sake of “the people” and perhaps learned to live with fewer government handouts. How many of you fell for his legerdemain??????? Dishonesty is dishonesty, no matter what its disguise. Whether weasel words regarding ITAL, or smoke and mirrors regarding the cost of fuels, it all reflects the same old same old same old disdain elected politicians seem to feel for those who elected them to office. Change of government, yes. Change of mentality, no!

  130. robin hood

    It is not so much about the increases, what the hue and cry is all about is the FALSE promises of Messrs Thompson et al just so they can have POWER. They could not care a snowball in hell about the reality of the situation. Mr. Thompson seems to be a likely protege of Adolf Hitler. Hitler told his henchmen, ” it doesn’t really matter, just promise the people whatever they want, it does not mean that it has to be provided”.

  131. J

    ITAL should require revealing BOTH assets and liabilities. Because who knows what favours are done becasue someone owes and feels that he or she must deliver. Declaring assets without declaring liabilities would be pure foolishness. Because we also need to check from time to time to be sure that someone’s debts are not being paid off in return for received or anticipated favours.

  132. X

    Reality Check,

    You’re right, but the PM’s best buddy (some say more) has seemingly just got approval for this multimillion $ development.

    I wonder what concessions (VAT, prop transfer tax, etc, etc) Parris was able to get.

    I support neither party and find it hilarious that the DLP folks think that things will be any different that they were under the BLP. Sure the “interview” last night was novel and I think a good thing for our democracy. But these backdoor deals (pun intended) will continue and this current batch will enrich themselves much like BFP’s past nemesis(s).

    This what he meant by not dissuading people from participating in public office. These types of favors and their notorious rewards are exactly what encourage people to run for office. It’s all very capitalist – I’m not defending it but calling it what it is.

  133. ROBOT

    Hants said

    “In the words of our famous Philosophers The Dratons Two.

    Yuh got to Pay eh eh eh eh eh.”
    ——————————————–
    HANTS
    ————you re wrong—————
    if you are quoting please quote correctly

  134. ROBOT

    AFTER last nite’s performance by thompson

    dont look for anymore such exercises

    thompson will be advised to stay away from such

    a gag order will be issued

  135. Donald Duck, Esq

    oil reached $114 a barrel today

  136. peltdownman

    I think that the large jump in the price of diesel was because it carried a much larger subsidy than gasoline. That said, the use of diesel for transport is on the whole far more efficient than the use of gasoline – more mileage for the dollar, if you like. The 70% jump in the price of diesel, however, will have a serious affect on prices right through the economy, from bus fares to just about everything we make or grow. The granting of special rates to certain qualifying enterprises will, of course, create a black market in diesel, and a burgeoning demand for syphoning equipment. Realistically, government cannot continue to subsidise fuel, but it would make sense to make it a lot more expensive for the average motorist just to drive around, as many do. For many in Barbados, the “drive about” has taken the place of a good lime. So there should be a big price differential between fuel used for leisure, and fuel used for business – in fact, I would have no problem with one subsidising the other. Similarly, with electricity prices, there are clearly those who can afford the full price of electricity, and those who cannot. An across-the-board subsidy of electricity is therefore unfair, and I believe that this could be remedied by the use of a sliding scale of domestic rates based on usage. This would also encourage conservation by everyone, and it would target those with big houses with hundreds of lights, swimming pools, etc., who could most afford it.

  137. So Long

    cooligan

    SOL and Exon will pay the BNOTL in B’dos money and the BNOTL has to seek real money from the Central bank to buy the semi processed crude. Like you confused

  138. Trained economist

    Does White rabbit really fell justified in making those comments. is the increase in price really primarily about more money for SOL? BNOC imports oil for all of Barbados> They buy at world market prices. if the products are sold at a fixed price while oil is moving up who picks up the difference if not the state.

    The petroleum products subsidy is fundamentally different from a lot of the other subsidies. With many of those subsidies you are really dealing with foregone revenue. With the petroleum subsidy the government of barbados picks up money and buys oil at one price and then fixes the price at which it is sold in barbados. if that price is lower than the cost of the fuel who picks up the tab?

    In this BFP world everyone other you guys are either incompetent or dishonest.

    A disturbing level of arrogance and disdain for persons who dare to have their own views, and try to be a little analytical permeates this blog.

  139. Donald Duck, Esq

    We should all ask for details of the tax concessions granted to the clico entity responsible for the development of sam lords

  140. Jerome Hinds

    The people of Barbados on 15th Jan 2008 voted for financial prudence and that is what PM Thompson and his team are giving them.

    If some of the commentators on this thread were satisfied with the previous BLP administration policy of allowing a debt accumulation of $ 8 MILLION month to go in fuel subsidies………then so be it !

    All over the world citizens are grappling with rising fuel prices…….recognising the volatile nature of the pricing index of this product.

    But how in the name of HONESTY…….can the BLP opposition only 4 weeks ago in parliament stated that the prices would have to passed on to the consumers given the rising increase in the global price of oil ?

  141. Politically Incorrect

    David Thompson could do no different.

    Neither he nor Owen Arthur calls the shots. Those of you who believe that they or any other PM’s, Presidents, et al do, are utterly naieve.

    Therefore that is not even worth arguing. The powers that be “instructed” i.e. “ensured” that this and very likely many other unpleasant things must be done.

    Gasoline up by 20% what about the world market “hollering” about inflation of food prices? What happens when practically all food that Bajans and tourists alike care to eat is imported, also goes up by more than 17% after shipping, taxes and freighting? Have you all considered a 40% increase in the Cost of Living? You are hot now. You will be boiling then!!

    Notwithstanding all of the above, as many on this blog have rightly said: promises were made that have been reneged upon. That makes Mr. Thompson, in plain simple English, let’s forget the double talk: a liar. Whether every politician in the world chooses that route does not make them any less of a liar.

  142. Bajanboy

    Taken from cbc.ca today

    ————————————————————–

    Gasoline prices surge to 3-year high
    Last Updated: Tuesday, April 15, 2008 | 3:41 PM

    Gasoline prices across Canada surged to a near three-year high, according to the latest pump price survey by Calgary-based MJ Ervin & Associates.

    The survey released Tuesday found a national average pump price of $1.185 a litre for regular gas, a rise of 2.3 cents from last week’s survey.

    That’s the highest average pump price in the survey since Sept 6, 2005, when gas soared to an average of $1.26 a litre in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

    Analysts say they wouldn’t be surprised to see gas prices hit $1.30 to $1.40 a litre as the summer driving season boosts demand.

    In the U.S., gasoline prices hit a record high of $3.39 US a gallon on Tuesday, according to the American Automobile Association.

    But that’s still a bargain compared to Canadian prices. After converting to Canadian currency and accounting for the different-sized gallons, the U.S. average price works out to the equivalent of 91 Canadian cents a litre.

    Oil prices hit record

    Record gasoline prices came as crude oil futures traded close to $114 US a barrel Tuesday, with a weak U.S. dollar and supply disruptions combining to push prices further into record territory.

    The crude oil contract for May delivery soared as high as $113.99 on the New York Mercantile Exchange. That tops the previous intraday high of $112.21 US set last week. The price for oil settled Tuesday at $113.79,, up $2.03 from Monday’s close

    Traders shifted money into oil as a hedge against a weak U.S. currency, betting that commodities would be a safer haven. Natural gas futures rose 16 cents to $10.21 US per million BTUs. Gold futures also gained — up $3.30 to $928.70 US an ounce.

    “We’ve seen another swing down in the U.S. dollar, so I think we saw short-term traders go back into oil as a hedge against the falling dollar,” Mark Pervan, senior commodity strategist at the ANZ Bank in Melbourne, Australia, told the Associated Press.

    Disruptions in crude supplies also put pressure on prices. An oil pipeline that runs from the U.S. Gulf coast to the American Midwest was operating at reduced capacity following a weekend shutdown. A facility in Nigeria also reported lower production.

    The TSX energy sub-index rose 1.75 per cent, adding to a 2.6 per cent gain on Monday.

    Shares of EnCana, Canadian Natural Resources and Suncor Energy all hit new all-time highs on the TSX.

    Some economists see no quick end to the oil boom, saying that continuing demand from emerging economies will offset any slowdown in the U.S.

    “Natural gas and oil prices are going higher, not lower, over the next 12 months,” CIBC World Markets chief economist Jeff Rubin told CBC News.

  143. Hants

    This is a great thread. Adrian Hinds if people follow your lead and conserve resources they will have a better quality of life.

    The one thing David Thompson has done wrong is not implement ITAL.

    He cannot be faulted for rising prices because even here in North America we have been surprised by some of the rises in Commodities.

    Here is an interesting one for you.
    http://www.upi.com/NewsTrack/Business/2008/04/14/canadian_swine_herds_being_thinned/5561/

    The Federal Cull Breeding Swine Program will pay $225 per animal culled to pork producers who agree to empty at least one barn of breeding stock for a minimum of three years, the Canadian Pork Council Web site said.

    The program has a $50 million spending cap and farmers must register to participate, the council said.

    Proper Canadian pork wasted.

  144. So Long

    Lawyers, Financial specialists and Business Managers that service off-shore international accounts are the people who pay for the Oil imports. Hoteliers, export oriented manufacturers are the ones who foot the bill for oil imports. Overseas borrowing and remuneration from offshore investments, rent to expatriates and money brought in by returning nationals is what pays for oil into Barbados, so it matters little what the average person pays at the pump or to the light and power other than of course to slow down demand and/or increase profits to the retailers of the final petroleum products. There is no passing on of anything, what a deception.

  145. So Long

    BFP
    You are moderating me again? Come on I took a shower, thought that might help.

  146. Green Monkey

    “Proper Canadian pork wasted.”

    Oh Lord. Doan’ nobody tell Lowdown Hoad. Dat would brek he heart.

  147. Tell me Why

    Congratulations to the Hon. David Thompson. Finally, finally, fiscal sanity is returning to Barbados after the tax, borrow and spend orgy of the last 14 years.
    …………………………………………………………………………………..
    Why am I sensing that trained economist is a minister of government and is using the blogs to substantiate the position of Government?

    Estimates of total expenditure for 2008-2009 of $3.4 billion represent an increase of 4.6 per cent over the revised estimate for the previous period of $3.2 billion.

    I am no economist, just a simple John Public who is finding difficulty in understanding how you can increase your fiscal budget, yet you are cutting back on capital expenditure.

    Estimates of total expenditure for 2008-2009 of $3.4 billion represent an increase of 4.6 per cent over the revised estimate for the previous period of $3.2 billion. To me, that will lead to difficulty in employment and a reduction in spending due to increases in fuel which will lead to an increase in the cost of living.

    It also shows that the decision to increase diesel fuel will have an adverse effect on increases in manufacturing, transportation etc. The anti-climax decision should have been delayed to coincide with your protection measures for these critical sectors that depend heavily on this precious commodity.

    What will happen is the rush to increase services and products by unscrupulous businesses to consumers and then place the blame on the 76% increase in diesel.

  148. peltdownman

    Tell Me Why

    This is where I have a problem with words to the effect “if you get protection and your prices are not reasonable, then we will introduce competition”. It shows up the glaring differences between the productive and the distributive sectors. The productive sectors have to absorb increases in raw material prices, freight in and freight out, rent, wages, and just about every input, yet competitive factors force them to maintain prices, leading to losses and eventual bankruptcy. The distributive sector just tots it all up, puts on a percentage mark up, and that’s your price. AND THE MORE THE IMPORTED PRICE GOES UP, THE MORE MONEY THEY MAKE AS THE PERCENTAGE MARK UP YIELDS MORE IN REAL TERMS. This, in effect, means a transfer of wealth in economic terms from the productive to the distributive sectors.
    One day somebody will understand this. I’ve done trying.

  149. Citizen First

    Thewhiterabbit,

    I believe that your analysis is spot on. That said, it may actually be a good thing if these measures encourage energy conservation and interest in renewable energy. However, the main structural problem is that Government revenues are predicated on certain levels of consumption so unless there is a committment to reduce expenditure, Government will continue to look for ways to implement taxes so as to maintain revenue.

  150. So Long

    Hoteliers, export oriented manufacturers are the ones who foot the bill for oil imports. Lawyers, Financial specialists and Business Managers that service off-shore international accounts are the people who pay for the Oil imports. Overseas borrowing and remuneration from offshore investments, rent to expatriates and money brought in by returning nationals is what pays for oil into Barbados, so it matters little what the average person pays at the pump or to the light and power other than of course to slow down demand and/or increase profits to the retailers of the final petroleum products. There is no passing on of anything, what a deception.

  151. Tell me Why

    This is where I have a problem with words to the effect “if you get protection and your prices are not reasonable, then we will introduce competition”.
    ………………………………………………………………………………….
    I agree with you on that score. It relates back to my school days when a guy who owns the bat and ball get out and snatch up his items and done the game. In this scenario the PM is saying, if you don’t reduce your items I will bring competition. But the new competition will be operated by the same distributive sector. New product same problems.

  152. Trained Economist

    You could not be further from the truth my brother. I am not even close to being a minister.

    If you heard Mia Mottley’s comments today you would appreciate why I say fiscal sanity is on the way back. She is defending a policy which resulted in a subsidy of 8 million per month over the last few years.

    At least Thompie seems to have the guts to take a tough unpopular decision.

  153. Straight talk

    I will gladly pay twice the price for fuel even after these swingeing increases.

    We must accept that oil derived energy has for the last 140 years been the godsend that has driven the world to its present bloated state.

    It is why the global population has been able to rise fourfold during that period, and we should thank providence for the two geological blips, millions of years ago, that left us such a miraculous energy packed resource.

    However now it’s coming to an end.

    Humanity must change or die.

    It is a stark choice, but the clever countries will adapt to change and may stay ahead of the downward curve.

    Those who moan about gas costing slightly more than Coca Cola and seek to blame everyone but themselves for a sensible increase in our most valuable resource, must suffer everything that will undoubtably come to them.

    I say double again the price, and force the necessary changes on our small island economy, teach the kids the value of fossil fuel whilst there is still time.

    Your grandchildren to be born will never own a car, in fact any car bought tomorrow will be abandoned through lack of fuel before the end of its useful life.

    Condos? Tax the hell out of them whilst there are foreign buyers, and confiscate them immediately upon default of land tax payments.
    Pretty soon these “windows to the sea” hoggers will not be able to afford the air fare for their brief enjoyment of our coastline and there will be a fire sale of upscale properties.

    This may sound a little doomy for your industry, Adrian L, and I sincerely hope we can put the right policies in place to manage the decline in tourism,
    but decline there most certainly will be.

    It may take ten years, but the planning should start now.

  154. Rumplestilskin

    Peltdownman says ”So there should be a big price differential between fuel used for leisure, and fuel used for business – in fact, I would have no problem with one subsidising the other”

    Exactly my point. You get the issue perfectly.

    We all expected an increase and know the reason, it is not rocket science.

    It is the balance of taxation and usage of the raw material that is in question.

    The removal of subsidy and balance of excise tax should have been weighted in favour of diesel for productive sectors.

    Too many businesses use diesel to manage this easily. What about cashflow while the businesses wait for refunds?

    Mistake. The petrol should have borne a penalty vs the diesel.

  155. Hants

    At least Thompie seems to have the guts to take a tough unpopular decision.

    That is leadership.

    I watch BNN, check bnn.ca ,every night and I am convinced that the North American economy is in recession and it will get worse before it gets better.

    Our solution is to work harder and cut personal expenses where possible.

    Hopefully Trained Economist and others will help us to think our way through this recession.

    Those of us living overseas should update the blog on our personal experiences.

    I paid $1.29 Canadian a litre today for Ultra 94.
    regular gas was $115 Canadian per litre.
    Keeping it real.

  156. So Long

    You idiots, seriously BFP, I am being avoided. Why do you think that is? I am quite prepared to admit that I am the biggest idiot on earth.

    *********************

    BFP says,

    what exactly is your problem? you had one in the que we posted it when we got back from a walk if you are going to be a problem child you know what you can do…. go to wordpress.com and start your own blog in 10 minutes.

    thanks
    george

  157. So Long

    I am privileged to have garnered that response from you. Goodness, it must be reserved for your better campaigners. Come on, as Halle Berry would say, “Make me feel good”.

  158. ROBOT

    you people are not true to yourself

    this is a country that provides education up to university level
    free health services
    free bus fares ARE ALSO PROVIDED

    these things were introduced for social reasons.

    the subsidies was a creative way to soften the impact of high oil prices e t c

    what are you all going to suggest that the–D L P next ?
    if the D L P raise bus fares to $5.00–you all would justify it

    if the D L P make we pay for university education
    you all would justify um

    this government is bankrupt of ideas; this D L P government will self destruct very soon

    it is clear that thompson cannot handle this boom and bust economy

    why did thompson make the foolish promises that he could not keep and now making excuses

    this reminds me of the emperor’s new clothes
    wunna gwine only realise that this D L P government is incapable of managing this economy when it is too late .-yardfowlism will not help us

    things will get worse and you all will continue to blame the former government. barbados faced its worse ever period 91–94 and owen arthur delivered us from the same gully that thompson and his band of incompetents is now pushing us.

    we heard the same crap talk from sandiford who could not handle the economy. owen took over the same economy and handled it well but ungrateful people vote out the man–saying that 14 years was too long . it is shame !

  159. Pat

    Straight talk
    April 15, 2008 at 1:19 pm

    I cannot imagine that the asset declaration of public servants would be published in the press.

    More likely the register of interests would be kept on file by the authority charged with enforcing the legislation.

    ***************************

    ST, you are right. These declarations would be placed with the Ethics Counsellor/Integrety Commisson, or what ever. They are not for public consumption but a guage for the Consellor to measure improprieties. The declaration would involve assets and liabilities. Where there are foreseen conflicts, the person would have to put his assets with an arms lenght Finanancial Manager, etc.

    Thompson has no excuse. He could get the Canadian system as a model to start. Afterall, Barbados used the Canadian income tax and audit systems as models and still sends auditors to the Auditor General’s office for good work experience and skills upgrading. (I met some of them several years back as we worked in the same building.)

    Bajans should do what I have done for many years, buy dry goods in bulk and when on sale. Just check the expiry dates. Buy olive oil in the 3 litre cans and transfer to smaller container for use. Buy 20 kilos bags of rice, especially now the prices are going up since the rice producing countries are cutting back on exports. Cut out soft drinks. I have not had one of those in donkey years. Make lemonade, orangeade and grapefuitade plus mauby. Better yet, eat sugar cane. Drink herbal teas using leaves and common herbs (thyme, terragon, rosemay, pennyroyal, sorrel, etc), it is better for you. Guyanese love what they call bush tea – sour grass, garden balsam, clamacherry leaves, etc.

    To save energy, walk and do not drive. Or drive halfway to a parking lot and take the bus. When you drive, stop speeding – the faster you go the more gas is consumed. Get rid of the second and third car. Buy a bicycle. Use compact fluorescent light bulbs and turn off when exiting a room. Dont use the oven unless it is a big job like a turkey, leg of pork, etc. Barbecue/roast over logs, microwave.

    Get rid of the cell phones (dont have one, dont want one). Unplug all tvs except one and watch as a family (there is only one in my house). Play one radio/stereo at a time. Dig up the lawn and start growing food rather than grass. Grow edible flowers – nasturtiums, borage, etc. Cook, (dont eat out) it is cheaper and tastes better too!

    To save money, pay off the charge card when the bill arrives, never carry a balance. If you must carry a balance get a low interest rate one. The one I have charge 5.99% per annum (Capital One) and I still pay it off every month. Rather than buying new clothes, accessorize with scarves, belts and jewellery. Dye older shoes to look new again. The money you save, put in the bank for a rainy day. You will be surprised at how it adds up.

    Good luck, I assure you, you are not over the HUMP yet.

  160. Pat

    Hants:

    I paid $1.13 for a litre of regular yesterday and got 2 cents back (actual cost $1.11) at the Superstore Refuel Gas pump.

  161. Hants

    Thats a good price for regular Pat. Unfortunately I have to use premium fuel at least 91 octane, in my car but I put 94 because the car runs better.

    Fact is that Bajans will have to pay more as the price in the world markets go up.

  162. So Long

    On reflection BFP, I was not referring to you as one of the idiots. Christ what are you thinking?

  163. Rumplestilskin

    Hants ”At least Thompie seems to have the guts to take a tough unpopular decision. That is leadership. ”

    The decision is not really unpopular, bajans know exactly why the price increases have occurred.

    But, there are three issues that may have not been considered fully here, as Peltdownman and myself have noted above.

    The first is the incidence of the subsidy/ taxation weighting between petrol and diesel.

    If incorrectly weighted / placed, as I think it has, it results in increased costs of production not only on a specific cost basis but impacts INFLATION.

    Secondly, by increasing the petrol cost by a larger margin, the average non-business user would have been hard put to travel other than essential travel, thus limiting ‘luxury driving’ and saving fuel usage. Saved fuel usage translates into saved foreign exchange. This will not happen for diesel as diesel MUST be used in business regardless of cost. Thus, little usage reduction, no foreign exchange saving.

    Thirdly, the result of increasing the diesel cost sunstantially will have a depressing effect on the economy, as rising prices will result in reduced purchase of the final product, if indeed it is passed to the consumer.

    Thus, we may have an overall effect of both higher inflation AND a depressed economy, not a pleasant scenario.

    As I said, in rationalising the subsidy/ taxation balance, the petrol should have been increased by a greater percentage, more than diesel, such that one would have only needed a smaller ‘reasonable’ increase in diesel, to maintain expenditure/ taxation balance without having too negative an impact on business and by extension the economy.

    That is my take on it.

    Peace.

  164. Sargeant

    Mia referenced Chinese water torture during her speech when she said that she can drop water on you drop by drop and you will survive it, Yeah right after you go insane

  165. So Long

    I will not live long enough to see Mia become PM, and I plan to live for a very long time, long enough to see Rumplestilskin and Hants move on to more appropriate pastures..

  166. Tell me Why

    If you heard Mia Mottley’s comments today you would appreciate why I say fiscal sanity is on the way back. She is defending a policy which resulted in a subsidy of 8 million per month over the last few years.
    ………………………………………………………………………………….
    You keep harping on the 8 million per month fuel subsidy, but what you are failing to tell the public that BL&P subsidy is included in the overall diesel subsidy in addition to the many manufacturers, distributors and truckers. Even the private owners with gasoline engines was benefiting from those subsidies. What will happen is the entire country will now be affected since these increases will have a compounded effect on the financial position of our people. With that in mind, I felt it is suicidal to implement these increases in such draconian doses. A 30% increase would be pain that we can tolerate in these trying times.

  167. Hants

    So Long says,

    “and I plan to live for a very long time, long enough to see Rumplestilskin and Hants move on to more appropriate pastures.”

    Is that just wishful thinking or a veiled threat?

  168. Hants

    I felt it is suicidal to implement these increases in such draconian doses.

    Why do you expect Government to continue subsidising fuel when the price on the world market is continuously rising.

    Why should Government take money from a man who rides a bicycle to pay for gas in somebody Bimmer or Benz?

    Simplistic but that is the reality.

    Keep reading,thinking and planning how you are going to survive.

    I would like a “Trained Economist” to explain how Barbados can function without feeling the effects of the rising prices on the world markets.

    CALGARY — Jeff Rubin has hit the bull’s eye twice this decade with aggressive long-term oil-price forecasts, and if his latest prediction proves correct – oil at US$150 a barrel in the next four years – Canada will become a global oil superpower thanks to Alberta’s oilsands.

  169. John

    .. after Owen’s play play economy its time to face reality.

  170. Tell me Why

    The distributive sector just tots it all up, puts on a percentage mark up, and that’s your price. AND THE MORE THE IMPORTED PRICE GOES UP, THE MORE MONEY THEY MAKE AS THE PERCENTAGE MARK UP YIELDS MORE IN REAL TERMS. This, in effect, means a transfer of wealth in economic terms from the productive to the distributive sectors.
    ………………………………………………………………………………….
    A good example is the behaviour in the supply of rice where the former government gave a reduction in levy on imported packaged rice without including the bulk purchaser who has to pay staff, utilities, trucking etc. Although it has been resolved by this Government, we must realise that competition will still face the bulk packager sooner rather than later and no type of levies will ease the competition. Peldownman, as I see it, there is no protectionism for the productive sector unless some protective mechanism is set up to assist the manufacturing and productive sectors.

  171. So Long

    BFP;

    A page on your site sais that I am “totally” in the wrong place. My God, “totally”? Who speaks like that ’round here?

    Hants

    Is that just wishful thinking or a veiled threat?

    Wishful threat?

  172. So Long

    Tell me Why

    I am pretty damn sure that manufacturers do not use diesel. They may use it in their delivery trucks. Bunker C is so much cheaper…

  173. "totally"

    WordPress is a California creation, so when you reach a “404” page, it says that you are TOTALLY in the wrong place.

    OMG!

  174. So Long

    sorry friend

  175. reality check

    BFP

    This has to be one of the most viewed articles in your short history—maybe just after the famous “piggy at the trough” award
    which Owing won hands down?

    ITAL is on peoples mind and they don’t like what they see or rather can’t see. This is a BIG letdown.

  176. So Long

    that should read sorry dude

  177. So Long

    How can I get this Techy guy to comment.

  178. Clive Not Signed In

    Hello Reality Check

    At one point yesterday, this article was the 87th most popular article across all WordPress.com blogs.

  179. Rumplestilskin

    ” long enough to see Rumplestilskin and Hants move on to more appropriate pastures”

    Haha.

    Huh??? Hants seems as nonplussed by this comment as myself.

    So Long, if my opinion is for some reason upsetting you, I can assure you that my economics is sound.

    It is hilarious how we now have mirror images of those who supported the last Government , now supporting this Government, unwilling to listen to other viewpoints.

    The reality is that I wish this administration very well indeed, but am utilising basic economics to assess the taxation measures and how such incidence will fall on the economy.

    Trust me (famous words, yeah), my argument is sound.

    Enjoy, I shall enjoy these ‘pastures’ while here.

    LOL.

  180. paul sealy

    Start saving up on canned goods and bulk rice,as much as you can,luxury foods will have to be left on the shelves once you can’t afford them also start spending money more wisely,leave out the partying,the women,the brand name clothes and shoes and things of that ilk and shop economically,anyone who wants to continue doing what they are accustomed doing has to realize the money must come from somewhere.
    Food is the No1 factor right now,if you can’t eat you will die,food distributors have to cut certain prices on select items so Bajans can survive otherwise social unrest will occur in this country and innocent people will end up getting hurt or killed.No amount of integrity legislation talk will save Bajans from the impending doom that the Illuminati want to bestow upon people of “Colour”,i beg you bloggers to wake up and start realizing how serious this situation is.

  181. Rumplestilskin

    By the way, planning for future expected events (and in some cases unexpected) is also part of Government’s responsibility, both economic and social.

    Obviously we can expect another increase to the petrol price later this year, dependent on the international oil price, which I suspect may be why the petrol price was not increased by a greater margin this time, that it will be later, thus a smaller hit now and another later.

    Now, even if we can expect another increase in the price of petrol later this year, what is Government doing to improve and implement better public transport as soon as possible, such that those who need to can utilise such transport to cut costs?

    That is an issue not addressed adequately but is part and parcel of the whole issue.

    Noting the subsidy to such public transport will not do enough to improve its working, it requires much more in terms of route planning scheduling, improved standards both in safety and inspections etc.

    Peace

  182. Rumplestilskin

    And now, I have said my bit on this issue.

  183. Inkwell

    Nobody in all this discussion seems to appreciate what impact the increase in fuel prices has on the transport sector, specifically the privately owned PSV’s.

    Initial information on the PSV problem is available at
    https://barbadosfreepress.wordpress.com/2007/07/17/public-service-vehicles-in-barbados-we-love-them-but/#comment-117468

    A PSV uses on average 80 liters of diesel a day, which at $1.46 per liter cost $116.80

    As of April 15th, that cost became $205.60, an increase of $88.80

    That’s $88.80 less per day out of which the owner has to pay wages (whatever method you choose), meet maintenance expenses, pay insurance and permit fees.

    All other entities in the privately owned transport sector have the option of passing on the higher fuel cost to consumers, all except the privately owned PSV operator, whose income is controlled by Government.

    On the basis of bus fare at $1.50, 300 passengers (if you are really lucky) will produce income of $450.00 (if you are really, really lucky to have honest employees)

    Subtract $205.60 and that leaves $244.40

    Now tell me what wages an owner can pay the driver and conductor and maintain a viable business, given the extremely high operating expenses and punitive road taxes.

    I tell you that if bus fares are not increased IMMEDIATELY or Government does not provide a meaningful subsidy the way it does to the Transport Board IMMEDIATELY, you will have trouble in the sector. On the basis of one day’s operation under the new prices, owners are already panicking.

    If that isn’t a recipe for more chaos in an already chaotic public transport system, I don’t know what is.

    I understand there is to be a meeting with the PSV association today. We shall see what we shall see.

  184. So Long

    Inkwell
    You’ll get no sympathy from me

  185. So Long

    Alright Hants, Rumplestilskin
    No ill will intended. FYI I am very much in favour of the Alba Alternative.

  186. Hard Times Coming

    Hey folks

    I think you should read this article and consider that in light of everything that’s happening in the world right now, we’re damn lucky in Barbados.

    That said, I think all of us should start creating emergency funds (monetary and food) to prepare for a food shortage storm that could hit Barbados. Think about it people. Eating meat everyday was once considered a luxury in old-time Bim. We might soon have to go back to those days

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2008/04/15/wfood115.xml

    United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has warned that the rapidly escalating global food crisis threatens to negate seven years of progress in the fight against poverty.

    “The rapidly escalating crisis of food availability around the world has reached emergency proportions,” Mr Ban said.

    “The World Bank has estimated that the doubling of food prices over the last three years could push 100 million people in low income countries deeper into poverty.”

    Mr Ban told a meeting of international finance and trade officials that short-term emergency measures were needed to avoid starvation and long-term efforts were essential to increase food production, particularly of staples such as grains.

    The “international community will also need to take urgent and concerted action in order to avoid the larger political and security implications of this growing crisis.

    The UN needs to examine ways to lead a process for the immediate and longer-term responses to these global problems,” he said, adding that the food crisis “could mean seven lost years in the fight against worldwide poverty.”

    Mr Ban’s comments echo an appeal by Robert Zoellick, the World Bank president, for governments to provide £250 million in emergency funding to the UN World Food Programme.

    The international community had “to put our money where our mouth is” to deal with rapidly rising food prices, which have sparked violent protests in Africa, South America and South East Asia, Mr Zoellick said.

    The prime minister of Haiti was ousted last week after riots caused by food shortages left five people dead.

    President George W Bush has asked national security advisers to look into how the US can help alleviate the problem, White House spokeswoman Dana Perino said on Monday.

    Mr Bush “is very concerned and believes that (developed) nations have a responsibility to help those that are in need,” Mrs Perino said.

    “We are going through a process right now at looking at ways to meet some of the ongoing food needs of certain countries beyond what has already been provided,” Mrs Perino said, adding that Washington had provided £1.05 billion in international food aid last year.

    While, providing few specifics, she said one proposal under consideration would be to buy more of the food used in assistance programs from suppliers closer to needy countries, which would cut transportation costs.

    US agricultural interests have resisted the idea.

  187. Trained economist

    I would like to hear more about the rationale for policy in terms of diesel versus petrol.

    My simple sense is that this coud have been driven by two factors:

    1. The disel subsdiy has been in place much longer than the petrol subsidy, hence the difference between the price of oil implied by the diesel price at the pump and the cost of the oil to BNOC may have been much greater, requiring a greater adjustment.

    2. The diesel subsidy may have led to a surge in demand for diesel by SUV type vehicles which may not have been the intent of the subsidy. The government seems to plan to replace the generalized subsidy by a more targeted one. This was suggested by UWI economist Winston Moore (top boy that). Of the deveil is in the detail with such subsidy programs.

  188. Trained economist

    By the way I have been persuaded by you guys on the ITAL issue. I think you should give the government more time to sort out details, but I appluad you for keeping this issue at the top of the agenda.

    **************

    Bfp says,

    We wish we could agree with you that the government just needs “more time”, but that is unfortunately not the case.

    They are stalling, and in light of the fact that the PM has shown that he has no PERSONAL commitment to ethical behaviour, transparency and accountability with the bizjet situation – we think his government has no commitment either.

  189. John

    … so why was it we spent $117 million on providing more space for more cars on the ABC?

    … talk about deadend thinking.

  190. Hard Times Coming

    Also wanted to add:

    As for integrity legislation and the like? The ability to have food on my table is far more important to me. And I’ll tell you this. A hungry man is more than an angry one; he’s also a desperate one. And he will do anything to survive, even if it means cutting your throat.

    I vividly remember watching on CNN a young Haitian man struggling with an elderly woman for a bag of commodity (rice or something like that) when relief supplies were being airlifted into country after some natural disaster or storm some years ago.

    In addition, unconfirmed reports coming out of Grenada after Hurricane Ivan suggested that the Prime Minister was hoarding some of the relief supplies entering the port and distributing to his family and friends.

    My roundabout point is this: That while ITAL is all fine and good when things are rosy, a document expousing all sorts of lofty ideals is not going to stop people from doing what they have to do to survive when things get brown.

    Let’s start thinking. There is a “perfect storm” of global economic and societal factors that can really set off our own local food crisis. (e.g. war, rising oil prices, bad harvests, biofuels, upcoming developing markets and consumers in India and China. A slowdown for tourism would spell trouble for us).

    Instead of quarrelling over the taxation rate or how much money was added on to gas prices, recognise that the global stage is more volatile than we might realise.

    Anyhow, rant over. The article and link are below:

    http://www.canada.com/vancouversun/news/editorial/story.html?id=3f0e464e-6ac2-4f7e-96b7-bfc36144c6ab

    World food crisis threatens rich nations (that’s us), too

    Stephen Hume, Special to the Sun

    Published: Wednesday, April 16, 2008

    The first food crisis to topple a national government in the 21st century occurred last weekend in one of the world’s most desperate countries.

    Haiti sacked its prime minister as food prices reached levels the already hungry poor could no longer pay. This is likely a first tremor of fulminating global instability should growing food insecurity push 100 million people closer to starvation.

    Yet, while the demand-side drama of spiking food prices garners headlines today, the re-emergence of a virulent plant disease that threatened world food supply before the “green revolution” is of equal concern.

    In the first half of the 20th century, wheat rust destroyed hundreds of millions of bushels in Canada and the United States, two of the world’s biggest food producers. But the world population has tripled since 1950. Now, with four billion additional people to feed, wheat rust is on the march again and resistant strains bred to defeat it are no longer immune.

    A strain named Ug99 emerged in Africa in 1999. Despite containment efforts, winds carried spores to the bread baskets of the Middle East. It is now poised to infect prime wheat growing regions in Europe, Ukraine, Russia, India and Pakistan.
    Should even one major wheat producer have a crop failure, the effect on the world’s ability to feed itself would be immense, which explains why crash programs to develop new rust resistant strains are now underway.

    However, if Ug99 spreads swiftly, devastating crops before science can breed resistant strains, already grave food security problems will expand. So this isn’t simply a distant problem for poor nations, it looms over rich ones like Canada and the United States, too.

    On Sunday, Britain’s Observer newspaper reported World Bank president Robert Zoellick’s blunt warning to the world’s richest countries that a potential planetary catastrophe is unfolding with frightening speed.

    In Rome, Reuters reported Jacques Diouf, head of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, warning that with 37 countries already in crisis, each day brings greater risk of global famine. “I’m surprised that I have not been summoned to the UN Security Council,” Diouf said. “Naturally people won’t be sitting dying of starvation, they will react.”

    India’s finance minister was more direct. “It is becoming starker by the day,” Palaniappan Chidambaram said. “Unless we act fast for a global consensus on the price spiral, the social unrest induced by food prices in several countries will conflagrate into a global contagion, leaving no country — developed or otherwise — unscathed.”

    Demonstrations and food riots have now occurred in Austria, Egypt, Indonesia, Ivory Coast, Mauritania, Cameroon, Mozambique, Senegal, Mexico, China, Pakistan, Zimbabwe, Italy, Hungary, Uzbekistan, Yemen, Guinea and Burkina Faso.

    Russia and Pakistan have imposed selective food rationing. India, Egypt, Vietnam and Cambodia have placed controls on rice exports. In Vietnam, armed guards protect paddies from rice thieves. In South Korea, a food panic stripped supermarket shelves.

    None of this was supposed to happen. Technology was supposed to boost production in a new green revolution; globalization was to bring down prices as food shipped quickly and cheaply from areas of surplus to markets where there was demand; the developing world was supposed to feed the developed.

    Instead, climate change reduced some yields, particularly in Australia, and soaring fuel, fertilizer and seed prices boosted input costs worldwide. Global markets require global transport, so oil price inflation affects freight, refrigeration, warehousing and basic agricultural production costs. Subsidies for bio-fuels shifts production away from food while population growth and expanding dietary expectations consume production gains as fast as they come.

    In 2007, farmers boosted world wheat output by 95 million tonnes. The market consumed it instantly. World cereal reserves dwindled to 12 weeks’ supply from 18, the lowest in 30 years and the slimmest of buffers against a major crop failure.

    These converging effects are behind the inflation that saw rice prices jump by as much as 30 per cent in a single day, corn increase 50 per cent and Canadian wheat, which normally brings about $225 a tonne, reach more than $800 before falling back to the $600 range.

    In the face of all this turmoil, exactly what is Canada’s national food security policy? Anybody know?

    <<<<<<I would ask the same question of Barbados. Exactly what is our national food security policy?

  191. Tell me Why

    A PSV uses on average 80 liters of diesel a day, which at $1.46 per liter cost $116.80

    As of April 15th, that cost became $205.60, an increase of $88.80

    That’s $88.80 less per day out of which the owner has to pay wages (whatever method you choose), meet maintenance expenses, pay insurance and permit fees.
    ………………………………………………………………………………
    My same views Inkwell, the only thing I did not go into details regarding the various scenarios due to the increases in diesel fuel.

    I cannot believe that three economic intellects would have sat down and approve these increases without analyzing the negative impact that will be placed on the poor, the manufacturers, the distributive sectors, the transportation sectors etc, etc.

    These increases release a can of worms for individuals and businesses to start wild scale increases to consumers. We are hearing the taximen, Zr’s, truckers intentions of passing on expenses to the consumer.

  192. Trained economist

    It galled me to hear Mia mottley talk about the need for incremental increases. With a favourable international environment, overwhelming public support and a very weak opposition the BLP government of the last 14 years could not find the will to adjust bus and taxi fares in the face of all the increases in the costs of operating a vehicle.

    We might now be faced with the need for a sizeable increase in psv rates to compensate for all the fiddling while the BLP engaged in the reckless populism that a bus fare of $1.50 is sacred.

    maybe the government may look at reducing some of the taxes on psvs instead. but the rate clearly needs adjusting. we have to move on from the economic cuckoo land of owen, mottley and crew.

  193. John

    So Long
    April 16, 2008 at 3:51 am
    Tell me Why

    I am pretty damn sure that manufacturers do not use diesel. They may use it in their delivery trucks. Bunker C is so much cheaper…
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Last night I heard both the TMR (Dick Stoute) man and the Solar Dynamics (James Husbands) man speaking to the negative impact the increase in the diesel price will have on manufacturers who generate their own electricity.

    Maybe Bunker C is diesel as well.

    If this makes sense to you here is a link to Wikipedia.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fuel_oil

    I suspect all, Diesel, Gas, Bunker C etc.comes from the $114 (and rising) barrel of oil so the prices of all rise.

    It may be related to the relative cost of producing the various fuels.

    I understand there is or was a subsidy on diesel as on gas but would have thought it was cheaper to produce diesel than gas and thus the differential would be more than 10 cents.

    Maybe the small price differentials reflect the fact that all the fuels come from the same barrel of oil and the cost of processing the barrel of oil to the various grades of fuel is negligible compared with the cost of the oil.

    Can’t understand why we just spent $117 million on a four lane highway and are incapable of making the public transport system work properly.

    Four tanks of gas per month that used to cost about $400 for an individual car is equivalent to 20 days of bus travel at $20.00 per day.

    The sense of car pooling is pretty obvious.

    Alternating odd and even car numbers allowed on a day may also be a worthwhile consideration. It might be rough on the one car households.

    Even a train might have made more sense than the highway.

  194. Tell me Why

    Hi John.
    I knew that Bunker C fuel falls under the category of fuel oil and would be part of the increases. Sometimes you have to ignore certain statements and move on.

    People is of the opinion that the supply of water to homes and businesses will not fall under ‘usage of fuel’ but it would be impossible to pump water at such pressure without the usage of diesel, direct or indirect.

  195. Hants

    Given that Barbadians have access to Satellite TV and can watch CNN and other “world” stations,
    prehaps they will spend a little time watching World news.

    Then they will understand that Barbados is going to be seriously affected by the recession in North America and rising World Commodity prices and food shortages.

    There was no point in the Government subsidising Fuel indefinitely.

  196. Hants

    Listen to Brasstacks. Licks gine share.

  197. Hants

    Trained Economist if you ca listen to Brasstacks.

    You will not believe what Liz Thompson is saying.

    She just said that businesses always pass on the increase in manufacturing cost to the consumer.
    She has no understanding of business in the real world.

    Barbados must be the only place in the western world that there is such thing as Competition.

    I live in Canada and I have to compete. Maybe I would be better off gouging people in Barbados but it is not in my psyche.

    Now this LADY is saying that we should refer to OWING as Prime Minister Arthur because the Americans call their ex presidents i.e. President Clinton etc.

  198. John

    .. time to get back to reality and face the real world.

    Pity much of our agricultural land will have been sold but …. c’est la vie.

    All part of the play play economy with leaders who confused the age old Bajan concept of play play with the rather more imposing modern description, virtual reality.

    Hopefully they will get to face reality too, sooner rather than later, and Dodds will be put to proper use.

  199. John

    Hants
    April 16, 2008 at 3:23 pm

    Now this LADY is saying that we should refer to OWING as Prime Minister Arthur because the Americans call their ex presidents i.e. President Clinton etc.
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    If I see him face due process and he ends up in Dodds like many of the rest them I will call him King Arthur, ….. if that will satisfy Liz.

  200. John

    Found these tips on saving. How different it is here!!

    http://finance.yahoo.com/banking-budgeting/article/104811/Extreme-Savers-Share-Their-Secrets

    Interesting one of the pieces of advice to the American audience includes vacationing in the Caribbean where the dollar is stronger than in Europe!!

    Should be good for us!!

  201. Sargeant

    Despite all the rhetoric we all have to give Owen credit for being observant as he could read the tea leaves and knew that a global crisis was on the horizon, remember when he appeared in that photo op in his Polo and slacks asking bajans to “grow more food”?.

    This crisis accelerated the election call as he was aware that he would have to implement some stern fiscal measures to counter, and he was persuaded that the bajan electorate would not reelect the BLP given the outcry which would follow.

    What Thompson and Mia disagree on is their approach to resolving the crisis. Thompson’s approach is swift and decisive while Mia’s and the BLP’s approach is slow and measured similar to “death by a thousand cuts”. This latter tactic has proven to be a failure which contributed to the bajan angst which was expressed in the period leading to and during the election about the continuing rise in the Cost of Living.

  202. ROBOT

    gary sobers now the right excellent sir garfield sobers used to bat on bad wickets and score centuries and double centuries

    sir brian lara did the same

    owen can bat on sticky wicket and score runs
    thompson cannot

    simple
    so cut all the excuses

    resign now b4 its too late -david thompson
    save yuhself bwoy !

  203. Trained Economist

    White rabbit, I am wondering if your argument that the oil subsidy is mainly foregone revenue is consistent with the reported surge in the BNOC deficit?

    If the petroleum products are sold at price fairly close to cost and the price at the pump then mainly reflects government taxes, what then explains the BNOC deficit?

  204. iWatchya

    Trained economist –

    “I would like to hear more about the rationale for policy in terms of diesel versus petrol. ”

    Let’s see….

    Diesel is proven to be much more ecomonical than gasolene.

    Use of diesel should be promoted along with the expansion of the biodiesel projects to help us become less dependent on pertoleum products.

    We can import sugar cane biodiesel from Jamaica / Brasil and covert used cooking oil -http://www.caribzones.com/handelcallender.html

    I would have thought that the common sense thing to do (as done in european countries) would be to cut taxes on gas/electric, natural gas, and solar charged vehicles, to make them much more affordable and to reduce or dependance on oil.

    That way we can actually decreaseour foreign expenditure.

    WHY NOT??? The technology is here, we need to make a start sometime!

    What was the real reason for increasing the diesel? Please tell me it was not for such a short sighted excuse as was given!

    I personally believe that it was about the GOB balance of payments.

  205. Sam Gamgee

    I may be imagining things but I am getting the distinct impression that some persons in this island want to destabilise the gov’t. And that comes from comments I have heard some persons saying and comments read on this blog as well. I am wondering who stands to benefit if such had to come to pass?

  206. Hants

    iWatchya asks Trained Economist,
    What was the real reason for increasing the diesel?

    Apologies for interjecting with my layman’s opinion.

    Because the Government is no longer subsidising it.

    There are Barbadians who ride a bicycle or walk but they pay taxes. There are Bajans who drive suzukis and corollas.

    Why should they pay for Gasoline that the Large 6 cylinder and V8 SUV’s are using?

    That is what happens when Government subsidises a product that is used by the RICH and the poor.

    You have to pay your way. There are no free lunches during a recession which is going to impact on Barbados sooner or later.

    To hear LizThompson try justify BNOC $80million in debt was enlightening.
    Taxpayers will have to pay that back sooner or later.

    And then there is also about $600million in National Debt.

  207. Jerome Hinds

    A mash up & buy back BLP…….is what we have been saddled with for the past 14 years !

    Unscrupolous inertia and incrementalism were the order of the day !

    Now that a much more balanced and improved management team of DLP leaders are in place……these BLP holigans ( including that CANTAKEROUS woman ) on Brass Tacks today pretend to not accept that the people of Barbados spoke decisively on 15th Jan 2008 !

  208. Politically Incorrect

    I observe from reading this blog that comments such as Paul Sealy’s and mine are ignored while the “talking heads” continue.

    When will you learn?

    Paul Sealy is absolutely correct.

    Read a book entitled “Death in The Air” by Dr. Leonard Horowitz and you will clearly understand the plans that are already in full swing by the Illuminati.

    Ostriches bury their heads in the sand. There are lots of both of the above in Barbados.

  209. peltdownman

    The Trained Economist will know about elasticity of demand, and at the subsidised prices, demand for gasoline was strong. It remains to be seen as to what level the price can go before consumption of gasoline begins to fall. The way Bajans seem to feel about their cars, I suspect that a number of other things will give way in their daily wants before they start to reduce the use of their cars. All the more reason to raise the price, even with the use of taxes, because if we are not going to save on foreign exchange due to the inelastic demand for gasoline, then the government might as well make a bundle in taxes and use that to reduce VAT on necessary items. However, the demand for diesel, in my opinion, will definitely be inelastic, as businesses and transport have to continue to run if the economy is not going to collapse. As I stated above, the high price of diesel is definitely going to put the productive sectors in a vice, as their prices have to be held steady against imported competition, while thir input prices continue to rise. We wait in eager anticipation to find out how government intends to ease the productive sectors from this additional burden.

  210. Wat you Mean "Military Supporter" ?

    “I guess he only started thinking about integrity in December when his military supporter did a cut and paste from the internet.”

    Military supporter?

    What do you mean “Military Supporter” BFP?

    Was the military involved in our last election?

  211. akabozik

    Yes BFP. Please explain what this reference is about. Why mention the military and the Prime Minister’s election promises?

  212. Jason

    BFP you are hinting at something about the military and Thompy. Come clean or remove this statement you are being irresponsible.

  213. John

    Bajans seem to be really growing up.

    This article has usurped Rihanna and the storm in a C cup article as the top post and put Anna Nicole Smith in bed with a Bahamian minister into a distant third.

    In terms of the number of comments received, the only article which to my memory remains ahead is the article about the Highgate affair.

    I guess it is all about priorities, matters of the flesh, skin colour and now politics and the economy rate very highly in our overall view of life.

  214. passin thru

    John you are correct. If the PM doesn’t take care this ITAL thing will kick him in the backside.

    Can you give any input on what BFP means with the “military supporter” comment? I can’t see the connection or what they are talking about and I know that you spend a lot of time at BFP. Have you figured out what the “military supporter” comment is about?

  215. iWatchya

    Hants:

    You have missed my point.

    I am saying that the reasoning that the PM has put forward does not wash.

    Plain and simple.

    How can he be saying that we need to spend less foreign exchange and not be moving to green technology, or using some sort of subsidy to encourage the change?

    The PM could have decreased the subsidy and still left it encouraging to Barbadians to switch.

    Imagine: Less litres per kilometre…. Less pollution…. Less Foreign Exchange spent…. Less bullsh!te… (Btw, that is another good source of energy)

    Also, why sacrifice an ENTIRE NATION for the rich few?

    … My layman’s opinion is that these measures still won’t affect them, just as the increased vehicle import taxes and road taxes did not.

    Does not wash…. plain and simple.

  216. Red Lake Lassie

    That IS a strange comment about “military supporter” in the article. I’m with Jason. The editors of this blog should explain it.

  217. Centipede

    seems that thompy’s talk about a ‘ferry’ hasn’t featured too much in these comments submissions.

    my view – and I’m probably wrong – is that Caribbean politicians have NEVER been serious about integration. Just look around at the state of affairs re ‘integration’ and you have your evidence without having to turn a page…

    a ferry service between T’dad, BDS and one or two of the islands that are abundant in fruit / veggies would do more to ease the cost of living than anything else.

    of course, to implement a ferry service would call for bureaucratic changes and THAT is where the difficulty is… Bajans and perhaps some of the others simply cant deal with change.

    another thing the PM could consider is taking the vat to 17.5% or some higher figure and taking the vat off all food and perhaps one or two other selected items.

  218. There will be no Ministerial Code of Conduct nor will there be any Integrity legislation nor will there be any breaking-up of molopolies with this DLP government…find out which local companies the law firm David Thompson & Associates represents…find out how it is that David Thompson has vested his interest in that law firm with his wife who is NOT a lawyer, has no legal training (she is now doing a paralegal course after being a PE teacher at Combermere)….so who is actually running the law firm….no corporate clients have been transferred to any other law firm….so who is actually running David Thompson & Associates….so does anyone now begin to understand the sudden stonewalling on the promised issues?

  219. Rumplestilskin

    Sargeant says ‘Despite all the rhetoric we all have to give Owen credit for being observant as he could read the tea leaves and knew that a global crisis was on the horizon”

    Then why in HELL did he put Barbados in such debt with Kensington and the highway/flyovers, despite criticism and calls not to, WELL over a year and a half ago, BEFORE the projects started (read this blog)? Why did he allow much agricultural land to be converted for condos and golf courses??

    No, he was not farsighted, or else he would have prepared the way for what is coming, both in ensuring that national debt was as low as possible AND ensuring that we were self sufficient in food as much as possible.

    And this comment is NOT hindsight, as I said, read the blog archives.

  220. Rumplestilskin

    Having said that, maybe we should not worry about food and Owen was indeed a visionary with filling the West Coast and inland with condos and golf courses.

    When the food runs dry we can all eat, yes, tourises in de condos!

    Anyone for European in a mushroom and pumpkin sauce, gently grilled over a brushfire oven?

    Proper pork!

  221. Donald Duck, Esq

    Did the PM use a private jet again to fly to Trinidad today?

  222. Time will Tell

    BFP

    What the hell are you referring to, with such a comment

    Military supporter.

    YOUR CREDIBILITY IS AT STAKE HERE.

    SPEAK-UP

  223. RRRicky

    “Military Supporter” sounds somewhat sinister.

    What is this comment about bfp? Are you playing games or is this a serious info?

  224. Just Asking

    A couple of questions.

    For Trained Economist: Who is the single largest consumer of petroleum products in Barbados?

    If I am correct and it is the Government will this price increase not mean a massive increase in the cost of running the Government?

    Did the Government not have the room to reduce the VAT on energy products to give consumers a little ease instead of profiting from the price increase of the products?

    Does anybody know how many permissions to subdivide agricultural land have been granted since the DLP came to power apart from the 80 acres mentioned by Sir Charles Williams on VOB? And how soon will the Agriculture Protection Act be passed?

    And finally did I hear the Prime Minister say on at least three occasions during the TV conversation that he would be hiring consultants to do this and that?

  225. Caribbean Brent Crude

    Is it not this month Liz Thompson hollered would herald start of drilling for oil/gas in our maritime zone? What is the status of the oil giants she said were beating down her door for seismic data? I have not heard one word from DLP on this since they assumed office. I did hear Senator Innis say there may not be oil/gas out there. Lord is there a truthful politician on the planet.

    Liz if you reading please update us on oil exploration. You can send the information through Time Will Tell Or Donald Duck.

    PM it is noticed you took energy portfolio under your wing. Educate us on what you found when you perused Liz and BLP files. Is there realistic possiblities of commercial quantities of oil/gas in our waters or was Liz giving us the old feel good to keep Donville Inniss at bay?

    Brazil yesterday claimed to have discovered the world’s second largest offshore oil deposit. Chavez must be fuming. Barbados like Brazil was originally Portuguese so there maybe other similarities.

  226. Hants

    And finally did I hear the Prime Minister say on at least three occasions during the TV conversation that he would be hiring consultants to do this and that?

    There is nothing wrong with hiring consultants to do actual work.

    The problem is when you hire consultants that do nothing work related all day every day.

  227. Trained Economist

    I was hoping for an explanation from white rabbit. He suggested that the fuel subsidies were essentially a loss of government revenues.

    My question was, if the subsidies were mainly a loss of revenues why is the BNOC running a large deficit?

  228. Green Monkey

    A man-made famine

    by Raj Patel

    The Guardian April 15, 2008 8:30 AM

    For anyone who understands the current food crisis, it is hard to listen to the head of the World Bank, Robert Zoellick, without gagging.

    Earlier this week, Zoellick waxed apocalyptic about
    the consequences of the global surge in prices, arguing that free trade had become a humanitarian necessity, to ensure that poor people had enough to eat. The current wave of food riots has already claimed the prime minister of Haiti, and there have been protests around the world, from Mexico, to Egypt, to India.

    SNIP

    Before he replaced Paul Wolfowitz at the World Bank, Zoellick was the US trade representative, their man at the World Trade Organisation. While there, he won a reputation as a tough and guileful negotiator, savvy with details and pushy with the neoconservative economic agenda: a technocrat with a knuckleduster.

    His mission was to accelerate two decades of trade liberalisation in key strategic commodities for the United States, among them agriculture. Practically, this meant the removal of developing countries’ ability to stockpile grain (food mountains interfere with the market), to create tariff barriers (ditto), and to support farmers (they ought to be able to compete on their own). This Zoellick did often, and enthusiastically.

    Without agricultural support policies, though, there’s no buffer between the price shocks and the bellies of the poorest people on earth. No option to support sustainable smaller-scale farmers, because they’ve been driven off their land by cheap EU and US imports. No option to dip into grain reserves because they’ve been sold off to service debt. No way of increasing the income of the poorest, because social programmes have been cut to the bone.

    The reason that today’s price increases hurt the poor so much is that all protection from price shocks has been flayed away, by organisations such as the International Monetary Fund, the World Trade Organisation and the World Bank.

    http://commentisfree.guardian.co.uk/raj_patel/2008/04/a_manmade_famine.html

  229. Linchh

    BFP:

    Mutato nomine: De te fabula naratur

    These comments are being offered despite my previous decision to withdraw my presence from this blog in response to the egregious comments of the operators of BFP on my honest and genuine attempts to put the DLP/DJHT Government’s proposed actions on IIPL legislation into a logical and realistic perspective. While I am aware that our PM reads the blogs, I am satisfied that he treats them in the manner that they deserve.

    Here are my observations on all that has been said on this post, to date:
    When that the poor have cried, David (Caesar) hath wept;
    Ambition should be made of sterner stuff. (3.2.97)

    O judgement! thou art fled to brutish beasts,
    And men have lost their reason. (3.2.110)

    Good night, good night! parting is such sweet sorrow,
    That I shall say good night till it be morrow.

    Methinks I shall start my own blog!!

  230. So Long

    Tell me Why

    For the record, the diesel that goes into trucks and SUVs (No 2) is most definitely not the same as the Fuel oil Bunker C (No 6) that is used by Pine Hill Dairy. Bunker C is a much cheaper Fuel oil. There has been little indication of an increase in price. Ignore this comment too and move on twit

  231. So Long

    SLUG
    I fear worse. Half of the Government parliamentarians are lawyers and there is also one international business manager. Who are their clients? Who do they represent?
    Now I am seeing (and hearing) Mr. Parris quite regularly on TV. Is he the real PM of Barbados now?

  232. Oilman

    So Long and TMW,

    Diesel and Bunker are quite different and both are used by manufacturers

    Diesel runs the generators (and the trucks) and bunker the boiler.

    Bunker C is NOT regulated by the Government and the price is changed every month to current market price by the suppliers (shell, texaco etc)

    The price has therefore been rising dramtically in line with oil over the past several months.

    There will no announced increase, they are already paying the increased price. Diesel, controlled by Govt has now simply caught up.

  233. me again

    Good night, all –
    Yes the c-word has outstretched its greedy hand again. Why is it that all the paid university study leave, BIMAP courses and Public Sector Reform seemingly have not yet produced a civil servant that can give a minister a shred of credible, reasoned, reliable advice upon which we can plan our country’s future? PM, I demand to know who these consultants are that are being hired, what value they will add and what they will be paid.

    On the issues of conservation, I hope that g’ment takes another hard look at solar power (last I checked except you’re a touris de sun bout hey still free) beyond reducing the g’ment energy bill, and stimulate investment in its other commercial applications; with our success in producing solar water heaters, we must have some kind of competitive advantage at least regionally here. There should also be tax credits that acknowledge consumers’ decision to purchase smaller, more fuel-efficient cars, energy-saving appliances and lighting fixtures. The GIS should be charged with disseminating more information about how to conserve energy in the home to this generation of Barbadians who have always had and take access to electricity and vehicular trans-p so for granted.

    G’ment also needs to champion a proper public transit system – as well as a dedicated school bus system – that operates on a schedule so more Bajans can opt to park and ride or use their cars on weekends only and still keep their jobs. This will cut down on the congestion on the road and reduce the need to spend so much on gas.

    However small they may be, g’ment also needs to identify those tracts of agriculturally productive land that have not yet fallen into golf courses, polo fields and quasi-gated communities, and direct investment in operational management, marketing and technology to create a bread basket within our own country; I hear the politicians re: a regional solution, but given our weather and the vulnerability of our SIDS economies we cannot put our eggs in anyone else’s bread basket.

    That is my rant for tonight.

  234. Tell Me Why

    For the record, the diesel that goes into trucks and SUVs (No 2) is most definitely not the same as the Fuel oil Bunker C (No 6) that is used by Pine Hill Dairy. Bunker C is a much cheaper Fuel oil.
    ………………………………………………………………………………….
    So Long, this is not the time to harp on Fuel Oil 1 -6 or from light t heavy. The word ‘bunker’ is just a terminology for a tank used to store these fuel. In the final analysis, all these fuel oils will be subjected to increases since these oils comes in various grades. Just think of the sugar cane industry where the sugar cane is manufactured and you get the following products; cane juice, sugar, syrup, molasses right down to hot mud or bagasse. Get the picture.

  235. me again

    Touche, So Long re: Parris …. Careful.

  236. me again

    Been reading through the posts and Pat’s stood out.

    Pat, you are so right –
    When I was studying overseas I lived so close to the bone that I nearly picked my teeth with my own femur one night.

    I ate meat-based protein once a week, snacked very seldom and purchased convenience and fast food even less often, shopped the dollar stores and bought what I couldn’t skimp on in bulk and/or on sale …. then I made them last. I took 2 and 3 trains literally in rain, sleet and snow to go to part-time jobs between classes (using a prepaid monthly transit card, something the BTB needs to look into for public transit here). I lived very well and even saved money some semesters.

    While my financial means as a working adult have not required that same level of frugality in my day-to-day life, the discipline gained from that experience has stayed with me; it has helped me pay off credit notes fast, cut up credit cards so I could save to acquire my first home, and pay cash for most of my big-ticket purchases since.

    Pat, maybe people like us need to go on a mission to empower our fellow Bajans how to live well on less.

  237. Donald Duck, Esq

    The Minister of Finance needs to answer the following

    1. What was the world market price of oil when you set the current gas,diesel and lpg prices this week?

    2. What is the loss of VAT and excise tax resulting from the removal of these products on the ehergy products whose prices you adjusted this week.

  238. So Long

    Like the man says, Bunker C price is not set by Government. Thank you, kind gentleman. Still know that it is cheaper that diesel (with or without tax concessions). It’s messy, smelly and deposits corrosive exhaust all over the place. So the only reason why it is used is because it is cheap.

  239. John

    passin thru
    April 16, 2008 at 7:46 pm

    John you are correct. If the PM doesn’t take care this ITAL thing will kick him in the backside.

    Can you give any input on what BFP means with the “military supporter” comment? I can’t see the connection or what they are talking about and I know that you spend a lot of time at BFP. Have you figured out what the “military supporter” comment is about?
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    I have not figured out the military angle but here is a guess.

    Back in December/January I seem to remember BFP produced the ITAL document direct from DLP HQ and claimed that unknown (maybe known, who knows) to the DLP, the document had identifying markers.

    It is only a guess but I suspect BFP may be letting us know that the source had something to do with the military.

    The quote from the article,”I guess he only started thinking about integrity in December when his military supporter did a cut and paste from the internet” seems to fit this guess.

    It looks kind of right but hesitate to apply the duck test as there isn’t enough info.

    Here is what I found in the link to the article back in January from this article:

    “We’re not going to reveal the information on BFP, but if you sent the same Word documents to anyone else then they have the same information that we have and the cat is out of the bag! Have a look at the document properties and we think you’ll see what we mean.

    Owen Arthur and the gang wouldn’t be too happy to know what computer was used to put the package together.”

  240. John

    I haven’t been too kind to Sir Roy in the past Sandy Lane/Royal Shop episode but I give him full marks for putting the case for increased wages to reflect the increased cost of living.

    Time to get real in Barbados and wage increases unfortunately, look to be the order of the day.

    Productivity however, is also important.

    We need to look for ways ways to reduce the impact of the high cost of living which do not involve high wage increases.

    This will involve all parties in the equation, the employers, the union and the government.

    Hopefully cool heads will prevail and each of us will listen to the other.

    We can get through the mess that has been created.

  241. Oilman

    yes bunker is normally cheaper

  242. RRRicky

    John, I looked at the comment and I think you’re right. The cut and paste job was (I think) done by a member of the BDF. Now that is interesting. Was it a senior officer? I’m not sure how I feel about the military taking an active role in politics and elections. It has never come to any good anywhere.

  243. Anon

    I am no scholar. So I ask all the learned persons on this blog to answer this question.

    What will happen to the Barbados economy when
    the government restricts their money making potential by taking one of the largest revenue makers off of certain items, give away NHC units (which I remind you the tenants already owe MILLIONS of dollars in rents on), increase the cost of living while being one of the largest employers (which of course the Unions are going to come knocking for a raise of pay), fire consultants hired (who will of course receive severance packages) hire new consultants?

    Obviously they have to be able to make money some other way. Are we looking at another increase in NIS.

    Will all of these give-aways not impact negatively on our economy?

  244. 31

    I feel the need to rant and I am sorry for who this will offend.

    Some of the people on this blog are not resident in Barbados some of them have not been resident in Barbados for a number of years and I think that they have no right to tell average Barbadians that we need to cut back. We live here not you.

    You don’t know how much we already cut and contrive to even survive so I think you telling us that to suck it up as very offensive. When you come home for more than four weeks and can feel the pinch like the rest of Barbadians then you can tell me these things. I know how Barbadians silently suffer.

    Some people as it is can barely survive right now unless you are willing to send home part of your salary to help then I say that David Thompson tricked the people with promises of controlling the cost of living and instead when ahead and increased the yoke on our backs and if any of you say that this is not so then you are liars.

    I WOULD RATHER KEEP THE DEVIL THAT I KNOW THAN TO BRING IN AN INCOMPETENT ONE.

    I support one party as many others do however, I will not play deaf, dumb and blind to the things they do. I think that if there was any wrong doing in the last government then they need to be punished however, above all things I love BARBADOS not any political party but BARBADOS and because of this my love is for all Barbadians and I would forsake any party before I forsake them. They voted in this government based on their PROMISES not mine or yours THEIR’S and I want them to keep them they said they would reduce the cost of living then do it sell.

    How will the people who work for minimum wage survive. How will they be able to cover the cost of their electricity bills will the governement also subsidise that.

    For the love of your country people wake up.

  245. paul sealy

    Take some time to watch Dr.Leonard Horowitz’s 16 part series and you will realize why we are where we are now.

  246. Trained Economist

    Maybe the new government is totally incompetent on matters of economics. Maybe the technical advice is bad (they clearly have not called me) or maybe they have not thought through the implications of their policies. Maybe they are catering to their friends and special interests. Maybe Thomppie wants to show he is is tough manager on economic affaits. Maybe they lack creativity in dealing with a tight situation?

    Would it not have been politically smarter to announce these increases a few weeks later after the 100 days? Would it not have been politically smarter to hold strain with the subsidies until the budget later in the year? Would it not have been politically smarter to have some more modest increases initially.

    I find it strange that a government that campaigned so heavily on the cost of living, that offered a new subsidy on flour as soon as it came to power would move so suddenly.

    Maybe, just maybe, there is a level urgency attached to the situation. Is there a cash flow crisis at BNOC? Is there a potential cash flow crisis generally in that the government is trying to head off?

    We have built up quite a high level of debt and debt service over the last decade. As anyone who has built up some debt would know, things can be serviced and managed until you hit a bump in the road.

    Have we given any consideration to immediate cash flow concerns forcing the government’s hand.

  247. Trained Economist

    The deficit at BNOC suggests to me that the petroleum products subsidy requires the use of cash as opposed to the revenue losses associated with a number of other subsidies.

    Maybe I am wrong on this, but if I am right and you are buying oil at $90 per barrel and selling products at a price of about $64 per barrel, you can probably build up quite a cash problem. That cash problem will come to ahead at some point, even for the government of Barbados.

  248. Rumplestilskin

    Trained Economist ”Maybe, just maybe, there is a level urgency attached to the situation”

    No doubt there is not only an urgency specifically in terms of Barbados but a crisis level in terms of the world crisis in both fuel and food, both connected.

    Neverthless, that does not explain why the petrol increase was not heaftier and some relief towards the productive sector i.e. diesel which impacts inflation.

    Sorry to harp on, but this is a critical point, that better could have been achieved with different taxation balance (subsidy is an integral part of the taxation model as you know).

    Now not only are we are dealing with a world crisis in food and oil, but as the fuel package is now designed we will also be dealing with potentially strong inflation and even a slowing economy at the same time as the price inflation.

    Peace

  249. So Long

    paul sealy
    Thnx

  250. ??

    anon, your message is real, and true but some are too blinded by their politics to admit it.
    There was much comment on BLP so called shady deals can someone tell me what miricle happened so Deputy PM oh sorry I mean Leroy Parris can get Sam Lords project going so quickly??

  251. Trained Economist

    maybe the fiscal (cash flow) problem cannot be handled without a hefty increase in diesel. It could be as simple as that.

    Or,

    A larger increase in gas hits a relatively larger number of people. It then seems more difficult to do a targeted subsidy from an admin view point.

    If diesel is used by the productive sector as well as by an increasing non-productive group (SUV etc.) as well then a targeted subsidy or some relief scheme may be administratively easier to handle.

    The government clearly has failed to communicate the rationale adequately.

  252. Sam Gamgee

    Anon, you need to re-read your post. It came across whether childish. The whole world is in a bind and you want the gov’t to do what exactly?

    BTW I am not offended; try disappointed. I would suggest (and I have lived here for all my life) that you accept the reality of today and find ways to deal with it.

    I have always been glad to get advice from persons who have been in particular situations so that I did not have to make the same mistakes. Here there are persons giving advice in how we could attempt to help ourselves and you telling them off.

    I don’t know who it was that gave some Bajans the impression that they don’t have to do anything for themselves because you are coming across as though you do not have to take responsibility for yourself.

  253. Beefcake

    The problem is subsidies even being present or considered.

    For a subsidy to be productive, it has to be phased out over time.

    This allows people and businesses to adapt. Businesses that benefit from the subsidy are given clear target dates to improve their efficiency; those that cannot will shut down.

    Part of the problem faced today is when government in the late 80’s started meddling in the economy for political gain.

    The shock price adjustments are not going to improve situations, nor is the use of subsidies. There are a number of subsidies that the current administration will be terminating.

    Barbadians are going to be in for a rough ride, especially those who have over-extended themselves on credit.

  254. Trained Economist

    without having any inside access, my own sense is that thompies advisors said to him that where we are really bleeding more is on the diesel subsidy. the differential between the market price of diesel and the subsidized price is probably much large than on gas. We are probably also seeing a significant increase in demand for non commercial diesel.

    One option to stem the flood of red at the bnoc would then be to sharply reduce the price differential between diesel and gas and find another way to subsidise the costs of the productive sectors.

  255. So Long

    Liz Thompson said that petrol and diesel were not subsidised, they were given tax concessions. Now which business in B’dos would be so dumb to use diesel to power his operation instead of the cheaper bunker C and Nat Gas? I just need to know one. I believe (translated means I have no proof) that diesel is used for transport and at most emergency back up power supplies.

  256. Natural Mystic

    Or maybe PM Thompson is telling us that we are on the highway to unsustainability. Maybe he remembers the good Colin Hutson.

    Maybe it is time for us to live within our means.

    Maybe it is time for us to reduce consumption rather than consume and to glorify consumption. Maybe it is time to promote the economical option.

    Maybe it is time for us to recycle and make a solution for our waste that helps do that.

    Maybe we were subsidising the wrong path.

    Maybe we have to look at how to change our attitudes and maybe teach our children well.

    Maybe, just maybe we’ll be OK.

    Maybe the special interest icons in business will stop price gouging at every juncture.

    Maybe lots of things and prices.

    Maybe we will stop being greedy.. and selfish.. and use our love for Barbados to make what we have locally work for us.

    Maybe the longterm is more important than the short?

  257. peltdownman

    Natural Mystic

    Towards the end of his life, Colin Hudson expounded at length about Barbados’ carbon footprint, and how it was hundreds of times larger than our ability to sustain it. No one listened…..he was whistling in the wind. We are about to see many of Colin’s predictions come true, but our heads are in the sand. We will remain selfish and greedy until the end………

  258. Trained economist

    I cannot reconcile Liz’s argument and the deficit at the BONC.

  259. John

    Diesel transports the cut canes from St. Philip and St. Lucy to St. Joseph and St. James.

    This is a direct result of the closure of many factories in the east and north of the island and it is related to the reduction of the acreage under cultivation in the catchment area of those closed factories.

    Diesel also transports the garbage from peoples’ homes and businesses from St. Lucy and St. Philip to Mount Stinkeroo.

    When the landfill or incinerator comes on stream, more diesel will be needed and longer distances will be covered.

    Diesel makes the economy move, both export and local.

    If diesel had to be rationed, the export sector, sugar, would to my mind have first call over moving garbage from our homes.

    We would have to find a way to reduce garbage to a level where what diesel was allocated could move it ….. the tourist plant would have priority as it earns foreign exchange.

    We have many many ways to pull our socks up. It is way past the time when we should have started, but we need a plan.

    Just as we have no plan for land usage and its allocation was left to a series of amateur monkeys hiring “pro’s” as consultants and looking for a dollar for themselves we also have no plan for garbage.

    These are just two of many examples where the basic flaw is that we simply have no plan. We don’t even have an understanding of our own country and how it physically works.

    We once watched one monkey knock out the power supply islandwide and shut down the whole country. That is all a real monkey does, cause chaos and destruction, he cannot run a country.

    The only saving grace of having a real monkey in control is that he isn’t in it for the money, just the chaos, so we all sink together, ….. unless he jumps ship first.

    …. of course we could also sell out to somebody and hope the person knows what to do!!

    Chances are we will get taken for a ride.

    Better to rely on ourselves and hold ourselves to a higher duty of care than we do.

  260. Anon

    The government must set the tone with energy conservation. Turn off lights in government buildings after hours; and more importantly what about all the government vehicles that are up and down the road all day and night, weekends and all. The question is who is footing these energy bills. Has there ever been an audit of petrol used. Is there a need for every government department to have an SUV?

  261. Donald Duck, Esq

    The increase in gas prices has clouded the other issues which thompson’s party promised and is failing to deliver.

    Why is it that they are not running with the provision that both houses of parliament will have to pass with a 2/3 majority any proposed change of use of land.

  262. Hants

    LizThompsonomics…25% increase at one end means 150% at the other.

    Anon says “The government must set the tone with energy conservation”.

    Absolutely.

  263. Hants

    Trained economist says

    I find it strange that a government that campaigned so heavily on the cost of living, that offered a new subsidy on flour as soon as it came to power would move so suddenly.

    If you have been following the North American Economy you would see that the current economic crisis was not gradual and Governments are having to fast track solutions.

    Example. To prevent Pig farmers from laying off workers or going out of business the Canadian Government is paying the farmers a total of CAD$60million to kill some of the pigs and throw them away so as to drive up the price of pork.

    The Ontario Government says they will continue to subsidise Ethanol production because the shortage of Grain on the world market was not caused by Canada.

    There is no magic to save Barbados. Every Barbadian has to forget politics and conserve energy and spend wisely.

    Tiny little Barbados better tighten yuh belt.

    Trained Economist you are doing us a service by sharing your professional opinions on this blog.

    I think we are in crisis and the Government has no choice but to take action that may be considered draconian.

    Follow the North American Economy and you will see the pressure Barbados is feeling.

  264. young one

    can’t wait till the end of the month to hear people’s views on this.

    i remember how bad people say things were under the former gov’t but in the space of 3 months time the cost of living get wrost. 3 months ago it was not bad too?

  265. (6 for a 9)

    261 comments so far and none from Wishing In Vain. I am disappointed.

  266. Hants

    young one says

    “in the space of 3 months time the cost of living get worst. 3 months ago it was not bad too?”

    Go on the net and research the North American economies.

    Go to Business web sites like BNN.ca or CNN Business.

    Check the charts on stock and commodities prices and you will see why Barbados is going into a recession.

    Young One you have the power to find information for yourself. You do not have to wait for us old folks.

  267. Pat

    me again
    April 17, 2008 at 3:18 am

    Been reading through the posts and Pat’s stood out.

    Pat, you are so right –
    When I was studying overseas I lived so close to the bone that I nearly picked my teeth with my own femur one night.

    ++++++++++++

    I also had to be frugal in university. That is where it started and I carried it over into my working life. For instance, I bought all my cars cash. I paid my mortgage off in 6 years. I live well, travel extensively, but still do not over do the spending. I buy only necessities. I do not have cable, nor pay tv. But I have several thousands of books, most bought secondhand. I enjoy reading and consider tv and “idiot box”. You can learn nothing from it.

    Bajans need a lifestyle change. They indulge in materialism and conspicuous consumption. In the end, they are no happier.

  268. Tell me Why

    I am taking three extracts from a well crafted article by Trained Economist.

    TE said:
    “Maybe the technical advice is bad (they clearly have not called me) or maybe they have not thought through the implications of their policies”.

    TmW says:
    I agree. This decision was made without factoring in compounded problems that would effect the the same vulnerable sectors. I said in my earlier articles that the $8 million per month was just a buffer to control the high fuel cost especially in the utilities and transportation (buses) sectors and not the emphasis he is placing on private transport”.

    TE said:
    “Would it not have been politically smarter to announce these increases a few weeks later after the 100 days? Would it not have been politically smarter to hold strain with the subsidies until the budget later in the year? Would it not have been politically smarter to have some more modest increases initially”.

    TmW says:
    Again, I agree with you. This swift movement resembles a take-over of a business. The new owners smile in employees face stating that it will be business as usual, and within months, we see a steady movement of employees on the breadline. Since the PM knew of these fuel subsidies prior to taking over Government and knew that the said subsidies were cushioning the increases in the Cost of Living, he could have reduced the percentage Government is paying gradually, instead of the draconian movement of everything.
    You cannot shoot the business sector in the heart and say the doctor will attend to you 2 months later?
    Alternatives should have been in place to assist these affected sectors. You must have a balance in this scenario.

    TE said:
    I find it strange that a government that campaigned so heavily on the cost of living, that offered a new subsidy on flour as soon as it came to power would move so suddenly.

    TmW says:
    The message was, “we will tackle the cost of living immediately after assuming office”. I believed them, the only thing is, they are doing everything wrong just to show that the ill-conceived statement of 100 days are working. It is just like a male trying to get a special female and start promising the sun and the moon. He then accomplished his mission and refuse to offer a simple cup of water.

    Remember the flour subsidy was over 1 million dollars for under three months. We are not hearing the real cost for the feed subsidy.

  269. Tell me Why

    261 comments so far and none from Wishing In Vain. I am disappointed.
    ………………………………………………………………………………….
    You are wishing in vain.

  270. Deacons cop

    for Trained Econ’s analysis–

    Total diesel and gasoline sold by BNTCL was 236.7 million litres (130.6 gasoline & 106.1 diesel) for 2006.

    At 4 cents per litre this is about $9.5 M per year. No way this can remove an $80 M deficit in the short term. Liz Thompson’s assertions therefore make no sense. She needs to explain.

  271. Tell me Why

    Have you check the supermarkets lately.
    Carrots that were $2.99 Now $3.50
    Cheese that you pay $8.00 Now costing $10.00

    Anyone else seeing increases. Maybe, I am seeing Guyana dollars.

  272. Wishing In Vain

    Just kidding

  273. So Long

    Trained economist

    Thank you, nor can I. Was kinda hoping that you could.

  274. So Long

    At least rum ain’ gone up yet. (I didn’t include Sir David’s brands, he did gouging for years).

  275. Anon

    Has anyone noticed that life continues as usual in government, politicians are chalking up frequent flyer miles, we don’t know when they are in or out, what is the purpose of their visits, no report when they return. Talk about transparency!!! The more things change the more they remain the same.

  276. rumboy

    Check the price of Old Brigand in comparison to the others and see how incorrect you are – so long.

  277. reality check

    If we had ITAL and full accounting for all government and government companies such as GEMS, 3S, Dodds and in particular NIS I think it reasonable to assume that these assets by any realistic appraissal method ( ie fair market value— based on a 90 day third party sale ) would be worth a small fraction of what the last government paid for them.

    The NIS invested some of these public monies into scam projects and these monies should be significantly written off.

    What Thompson undoubdetly knows is that the country is BANKRUPT and has to claw its way out of the hole. Subsidies that can’t be justified will need to be stopped and we will need to start swallowing the medicine.

    It would be a better policy to let us know what is in front of us to fix ( ie full disclosure ) rather than falling into the same game of deception and no disclosure like the last group of power hungry bandits.

    Lets start with a clean slate by knowing the worst case situation NOW!!!

  278. Hants

    I tightening de belt. I just paid cad$1.28 per litre for 91 octane. 94 octane was cad$1.31.

    regular Gas was 117.9 and it was just announced it going up tonight by 2 cents per litre here in Toronto.

    Interesting times ahead.

    Our food prices rising as well but I don’t think it is a problem here in Canada yet.

  279. Hants

    “As the Scotiabank commodity price index reported recently, Canada No. 1 grade wheat jumped to an extraordinary $798 a tonne in February 2008, which is more than three times the $252 a tonne it was averaging over each of the past two crop years.”

    When I read the above and see my favorite whole Wheat bread here in Toronto go from $1.99 to $2.59 I know that the products Barbados importing from Canada going up.

    Thompson’s actions are a preemptive strike to try to manage a looming economic crisis that is starting to hurt Barbados.

    I hope there is enough good will for Barbados on this blog that Overseas bajans will add information about prices in their hometowns.

  280. Tell me Why

    I hope there is enough good will for Barbados on this blog that Overseas bajans will add information about prices in their hometowns.
    ………………………………………………………………………………….
    Your price structures and your price increases cannot be compared with Barbados. At the time of purchase, your dollar is your dollar and my dollar is my dollar.

  281. me again

    Thanks, ‘reality check’; at last someone with some type of constructive suggestion. I give the PM credit for “levelling” with us and treating us like the mature, responsible citizens we need to become if we want to live in the ‘first world’ (which I frankly think is highly over-rated).

    That said, I am disppointed at ’31’.

    For the record I am a Barbadian, born and bred of Bajan parents – one from town with absentee emigrant parents and one among 7 siblings from de country, both born in the 40’s – who never had the benefit of rich parentage nor university degrees but worked hard and honest and pursued the Bajan dream to own several pieces of the rock and give their children the educational opportunities they did not enjoy.

    I learned from their mistakes when it came to conspicuous consumption, but I also learned (like Pat has pointed out) that you can indulge in the things that truly bring “you” joy, and not on impressing other people with big, expensive to maintain houses and cars and jewels and brand name gear and cell phones and other personal entertainment devices (the main money-eating vices of many middle-class Bajans, let’s admit it) who neither know nor really care what wings you are flying on.

    G’ment is not some kind of state-paid baby-sitter who should let you play in some naiive dream world. It’s g’ment’s responsibility to prudently run the country and redistribute the wealth to those who truly need the help most, not to run our lives – that is entirely up to us.

  282. Hants

    Tell me Why you have a lot of products in Barbados that are identical to the ones we have in Canada. Presidents Choice and the No Name brands can be used for comparison of prices increases.

    Yes we pay $4.00 for Raisin bran and you pay$20

    The only purpose of the comparison is to show that price increases in Barbados are similar to price increases in North America.

    OK so we don’t need comparisons.

    Statement of fact. Prices of Food and Oil are constantly rising on the world markets and Barbados will suffer.

    Thompson had to stop the bottomless pit called Oil subsidies.

  283. John

    … another bottomless pit is Greenland, …. $50million and counting.

    Then there are GEMS, Dodds, 3S, ……

    Like we dug a hole in our country past China.

    No wonder we have so many chinese restaurants here.

  284. John

    … but I have to admit, the food is sweet.

  285. iWatchya

    Gotta love Chinese food.

    Dunno if they want to offer “All You Can Eat” here again tho.

  286. JC

    31 u r so funny. I dont care be it david thompson owen arthur, errol barrow, grantley adams or who ever they could not have kept the cost of living down the blp even admitted that. SO PLEASE GIVE ME A BREAK. And by the way u think only you love your country all of us do; even the ones hu live overseas. That is a FACT. Therefore be realistic, even if we were fooled; we were fooled by owen seymour arthur for fourteen years. We need to band together as PROUD BAJANS and weather the storm. Not cryout bout this and that. I am one hu is telling all my friends on the block to conserve cause 31 they dont care or seem to be aware. We need to help one another and spread the word about conserving. Not cry about a bunch of promises.

  287. Thewhiterabbit

    Trained Economist

    If you are yet reading this thread (sorry, I work three jobs to make ends meet so don’t have a lot of spare time to blog) here is the way BNOTL (or whatever it is really called) gets a debt of $80 million. Look up on any commodity market listing the price of gasoline. Today (18 April 08) it is very close to $1.50 per liter in local currency. That is what BNOTL should be paying for the commodity. If they are paying more then they should try to get help from government like the chef that is being discussed on BU, i.e. they are really poor businessmen. To that price is added a very few cents for transportation and another very few cents per liter for the gasoline station. For this discussion we will ignore the transport and sales costs as they are really too small to matter. To that price is appended a tax burden which is unknown because without ITAL it is very difficult to determine the real $$$$$, but let us say that the tax burden is $1.25. BNOTL MUST pay the $1.25 tax and the $1.50 commodity cost per liter, meaning it’s real price is $2.75 per liter. Prior to Mr. Thompson’s talk the price was something like $2.25 per liter (I don’t know, I am a now well-screwed diesel man). By selling at $2.25 per liter BNOTL lost $.50 per liter, but only because it had to pay the tax, irrespective of commodity cost, and the final price at the pump was set by Government. Now BNOTL is government, but must by statute give Government its tax askings, so it borrows the $.50 per liter difference from some other government agency (the debt is entirely local and entirely within government) and over time runs up a supposed “debt” of $80 million. There is no real “debt” there is only one agency of government “owing” tax $$$$ to another agency of government. At the end of the day what has happened is that Government has “lost” a total of $80 million in tax revenue over however long the price at the pump did not reflect the commodity cost plus the tax burden. To make it even more complicated we know that BNOTL is busy pumping crude for which it should be getting a whopping huge increase in revenue due to the skyrocketing cost of crude. We know we don’t pump enough to cover anything near our needs, but there should be an increase in revenue regardless. Finally, as a function of our strange contractual relationship with T&T for the refining of our crude we may actually be paying less that $1.50 per liter (meaning the tax take is even higher), but of this I am unclear (again, no ITAL). All this legerdemain allows Mr. Thompson to go on TV and start talking about a Government subsidy on fuels, which is an outright lie, and he cries his crocodile tears, and raises the local price of fuel not to eliminate any subsidy (subsidy meaning that Government paid out money for the purchase of the fuel as a commodity. If Government were actually subsidizing the price of fuel we would pay LESS than $1.50 per liter for gasoline), but instead to recover lost tax revenue. This writer would not mind paying the tax on fuels IF the said tax money went into maintenance of roads (clearly not much does). This writer remains pretty convinced that the $$$$ go simply into the general fund from which they can be tiefed with impunity in multitudinous ways (helped along by lack of ITAL). This is not to say that it couldn’t be tiefed from a highway fund, but at least the possible opportunities for tiefing would be reduced and we would likely end up with better roads. Finally, a lot of bloggers here have noted that Government cannot control the basic commodity price of fuel, which is true. However, Government has complete control of the tax burden, as they let us all know on Monday evening!!!!! And quite clearly we don’t need PetroCaribe with its hidden costs and implications, our fuel price is almost completely a local tax issue and not a world commodity price issue. OK, I editorialized at the end, but the essence of how the “debt” was accumulated is covered.

  288. Trained economist

    I sugegst you look at some annual reports of the BNOTL and tell me if you still stick to your argument.

  289. Pat

    Dont know about you Hants. My favourite loaf is a 12 grain I buy at Farm Boy. Three weeks ago it went from $3.49 to $4.49. I raised Cain and told the attendant I aint buying. I would have paid another 25 cents or even 50 cents. I left it right there and told the poor clerk to tell the Manager he can eat it. I settled for light rye with caraway seeds. Went into the store last week and would you believe the price was reduced…. regular price is now $3.99 and it was on sale for $2.99. Joy! I was told that every one complained, so management listened.

  290. Riceman

    white rabbit you are so confused i dont know where to start

    the BNOTL was buying the fuel at commodity prices and selling at a loss to the fuel distributors. This is the meaning of the “subsidy”

    they needed to sell at a loss because the retail price is fixed and so the BNOTL price must be fixed. The difference between the “commodity price” and the price at the pump is

    -handling and transport
    -fixed profit margin of distributor and retailer
    – excise tax (not a secret look at the act)
    -VAT (again no secret)

    you can argue that the excise and vat are higher than the loss and Govt was still taking a net income but the fact is if they must reduce taxes to give you a lower price then that would be a reduction in revenue to the govt.

    Govt was offsetting its normal level of tax take with losses on trading the fuel. It has now acted to stop that loss.

    I hope this makes it clearer.

  291. Donald Duck, Esq

    trained economist

    You must be an MP since the public don’t get to see the accounts of such entities as BNOTL

  292. Asiba-The Buffalo Soldier

    would love to comment but ASIBA deals with music and history
    specifically FAT-(blubber blubber) and the question of healthy lifestyles: no excessive eating ; correct diets ; exercise and discipline

  293. Hants

    ” It was always nonsensical and reckless to behave as though Barbados was isolated from developments elsewhere in the world.”

    Taken from the Editorial of the ADVOCATE titled “Only option is to adjust.”

    The Editor wasn’t joking when he pledged his support for his new best friend.

  294. Trained Economist

    No, statements have to be laid in parliament and then the public can access them.

    I find your argument and figures quite persuasive, but the oil company’s numbers suggested otherwise.

  295. Donald Duck, Esq

    Can anyone tell me why the government would appoint Sir Kyffin simpson to be a Director of the Central bank of barbados when he is at the same time a director of first caribbean international bank. Is this not a conflict of interest? Is this a good governance?

  296. Trained Economist

    Maybe donald duck or white rabbit can correct me. But searching the internet suggests that diesel is more expensive than gas at the pump in the USA.

  297. GetItRight

    Some of you on this blog…. should first consider being nationalist instead of party faithfuls..
    This is serious stuff going on in this country and we still being blinded to the foolishness that has been happening, from one Party to the Other.
    Wake Up!! ALL OF YOU!

  298. Time will Tell

    CENTRAL BANK OF BARBADOS
    Board of Directors and Senior Officers
    BOARD OF DIRECTORS

    Marion V. Williams, Ph.D., F.C.I.B., C.M.A., G.C.M., Chairman

    Ms. Onika Stewart LL. B (UWI) LL. M (Lond) L.E.C.

    Justin Robinson Ph. D, (Manc) Msc, Bsc (UWI)

    Mr. Ashley Toppin FCCA, JP

    Mr. Cecil McCarthy LL. B, (UWI) L.E.C.

    Grantley W. Smith, Esq., B.A. (Hons.), D.P.A., B. C. H.

    Sir Kyffin Simpson KA, CBE, Hon. LL. D (UWI)

    Mr. Elson A. Gaskin, LLB. (UWI) L.E.C. Legal Counsel / Secretary to the Board

    BFP….

    DO YOU NOT SEE ANYTHING WRONG WITH THIS LIST ?

  299. Pingback: Barbados Prime Minister’s Latest Jet Charter - No Transparency, Potential Conflict of Interest « Barbados Free Press

  300. ROBOT

    trained eekconomist

    you are a bit too bias in your comments

    be more objective please. you are grating my nerves with your diatribe-you sound like a politician of the DLP——IF YOU ARE SO TRAINED –PLEZSE BE M3ORE OB4JECTIVE

  301. Gort

    I am not going to be objective. I call things as I see them. Congratulations to David Thompson for his frankness, candour and effective action. I am glad that my country has a leader who can take action and explain it. Or not take action and explain himself. I thoroughly understood what he said in the interview and since then.

    Yes, I would have liked the Integrity Legislation at least laid in parliament but I can understand fully, unlike BFP, why it has not been done. Instead a Unit on governance has been set up. Good. A Committee under the chairmanship of no-nonsense Orlando Marville has been set up and is establising the criteria for the new laws. Public hearings will be helf. That, of course does not suit BFP because they prefer to anonymously savage the reputations of citizens. (And then moderate your comments!). So public hearings wiould expose the faceless hypocrites at BFP who are holier than thou. (At least for now!)

    ****************

    BFP says,

    So tell us again why David Thompson said he would adopt a Ministerial Code immediately upon forming a government… and he did not.

    Tell us why please. Was he mistaken? Did he lie? Was there a rebellion of his elected members?

    Tell Barbados why he did not do as he said he would.

  302. Thistle

    Oh, come on, BFP, you’re beginning to sound like a broken phonograph record, especially after breaking your own promise to us, of exposing the money laundering issue, without so much as an apology.
    Enough, already.

    *******************

    BFP says,

    1/ Yes, and we will continue to sound like a broken record so long as politicians lie about their intents, fail to do that which they promised and act unethically as Thompson appears to be doing.

    2/ You either lie about us not explaining the specific money laundering story or you missed the explanation which was that we had a problem at the time that our source would have been revealed. We have since revealed the content of the money laundering story which is that Gline Clarke had a personal bank account at the ScotiaBank, and that he paid the workers who built his home in cash every Friday during its construction – with funds from the personal account which also received campaign funds.

    3/ We find it sad that those DLPers who hammered the BLP government for unethical behaviour are now using the same excuses that the BLP supporters used in defending their own piggies.

    But all this does effectively set the stage for the next phase of politics in Barbados: a 3rd party based upon integrity which will garner enough support even during the first election to be a spoiler and determine the actual outcome of the election.

    Just watch.

  303. ROBOT

    bfp writes
    ——————-
    But all this does effectively set the stage for the next phase of politics in Barbados: a 3rd party based upon integrity which will garner enough support even during the first election to be a spoiler and determine the actual outcome of the election.

    —————————–
    wait there fer um

  304. Trained Economist

    can you be a bit more specific in terms of my bias?

  305. Trained Economist

    Sorry if I am grating your nerves robot.

    But I believe the evidence supports the view that fiscal policy was rather lax over the last 10 years. Despite a growing economy and a new major source of revenues in the form of VAT the fiscal position of Barbados worsened over the last ten years and there has been an extensive build up of debt.

    I found the petroleum products subsidy policy inexplicable except if one were being driven by an election clock.

    I believe that the new government is moving in the right direction by showing some balls in the are of fiscal policy and I am prepared to cheer them along this line. if that makes me biased then so be it.

  306. Tell me Why

    I found the petroleum products subsidy policy inexplicable except if one were being driven by an election clock.
    …………………………………………………………………………………..
    I am petrified with the hardships that will be encountered by everyone due to the removal of the oil subsidy. What I am seeing, the Government in their quest to get at the private owners of diesel vehicle, prefer to affect the entire nation and then talk about individual subsidies. This is adhoc management that will contract the economy.

    Even if the subsidy was reduced, the country would have been able to swallow the pain in small doses instead of forcing everything down our throat in one serving.

    So if you think this is prudent fiscal policy, reel and come again, because this action will lead to an increase in the cost of living.

    Would you believe that a block of cheese increase by nearly $15.00.

  307. Zachary

    Frank DaSilva like he reading de blogs too. He was just on CBC news saying that he hopes this Gov’t will soon implement ITAL.

    It like it working, BFP.

  308. Trained Economist

    subsidies make sense if you are providing short term relief. the trend in fuel prices seems to be a long term one. The subsidy is simply unsustainable. The economy needs to begin to adjust.